October cattle closed moderately lower on the session yesterday, finishing near the lows of the day after trading both sides of unchanged. A sharp break in the US stock market was thought to have pressured the market but higher beef prices were seen as helping traders remain optimistic that cash can trade higher this week. A rally in the beef market was also seen as providing underlying support but weakness in the stock market, deteriorating consumer confidence and recent signs that exports might be slipping from their recent strong pace were factors that might reduce the premium of futures prices to the cash market. Cash cattle in the southern plains have not traded yet this week, with bids at $109.00-$110.00 while offers are at $114.00-$115.00. Cash traded at $113.50 last week and some traders believe cash can trade higher this week due to a smaller showlist, rising beef prices and profitable packer profit margins. The estimated cattle slaughter came in at 127,000 head yesterday. This brings the total for the week so far to 382,000 head, up from 380,000 head last week at this time and up from 379,000 head a year ago. Boxed beef cutout values were up $1.19 at mid-session yesterday and closed $1.29 higher at $176.23. This was up from $173.51 the prior week and is the highest beef market since July 21st. The boxed-beef load count this week would suggest a weekly export total this morning of near 11,700 tonnes as compared with 17,200 tonnes last week.