Cattle futures closed sharply higher during Tuesday's session, as a rally in beef prices to an eight-year high helped to support the market. Reports of negative packer margins may have limited the advance but some traders took note of interest from packers with booking more live inventory so there are some indications that packers may need additional cattle in order to meet their previously booked needs. A negative outlook for the stock market this morning could add pressure to the market ahead of the holiday weekend. The 305 point surge over two sessions still leaves the market some 400 points below the November highs. For the monthly USDA cold storage report, end of October frozen beef stocks came in at 414.2 million pounds as compared with 427.6 million the previous month and about unchanged from last year. Stocks were down 3% for the month while typically increasing by about 1% for the month of October, so the report was widely considered to be supportive for the cattle market The estimated cattle slaughter came in at 131,000 head yesterday. This brings the total for the week so far to 263,000 head, up from 252,000 head last week at this time but down from 265,000 head a year ago. Boxed beef cutout values were up 52 cents at mid-session yesterday and closed 49 cents higher at $196.87. This was up from $194.25 the prior week and is the highest beef market since beef traded at $200.65 on October 20th of 2003.