December cattle closed moderately higher on the session yesterday in what was seen as fairly quiet trading. The cattle market continued to trade higher overnight, which was thought to be in reaction towards stronger grain markets. Demand concerns persist and packer margins are still in the red but packers seem to need cattle to process orders and to process export business. News that cash traded as high as $124.00 in Nebraska this week and another rally in the US stock market were thought to have supported the market. December futures have traded as much as 537 points above Tuesday's lows. The estimated cattle slaughter came in at 123,000 head yesterday. This brings the total for the week so far to 378,000 head, down from 387,000 head last week at this time and down from 379,000 head a year ago. Boxed beef cutout values were down 60 cents at mid-session yesterday and closed 29 cents lower at $187.38. This was down from $187.45 the prior week. Commercial hatcheries set 186 million eggs into incubators for the week ending October 29th, which is down 7% from last year. For the past six weeks, egg settings have been down 7%-9% from last year, and this is widely expected to push poultry supply lower into early next year.