June and August cattle saw some early strength on Friday but macroeconomic concerns and end-of-week liquidation were thought to have pressured the market off of the early highs. Uncertainty over economic issues in Europe and China and fears that these factors could pressure consumer sentiment helped to offset recent gains in beef prices. The strength in the US Dollar also had traders nervous over possible sluggish export demand ahead. Heat on the weekend for the plains could slow weight gains. While many traders feel that the short-term cash fundamentals look weak, hog futures are already trading at a discount to the cash market. Higher imports, slower exports and higher than normal weights are all factors which may help to boost near-term beef production, and the huge cold storage levels are seen as a cushion against any short-term decline in production. While production for the 3rd quarter is expected to be lower than the 2nd quarter for only the second time in the past 22 years, June beef availability is still considered high. The estimated cattle slaughter came in at 124,000 head Friday and 10,000 head for Saturday. This brought the total for last week to 636,000 head, down from 641,000 head the previous week and down from 674,000 head a year ago. Boxed beef cutout values were down 85 cents at mid-session Friday and closed 93 cents lower at $194.63. This was up from $192.51 the prior week.