Some highlights from this week’s Weekly Livestock Market Update:
• This week in the markets – Cash cattle ended the $1.25 higher, while feeder cattle were steady to $6 higher. December live cattle are $1.75 higher this and November feeder cattle futures closed $1.20 higher. Choice box beef price gained $5.81. Strength in the ribs and loins led to the jump this week. Barrow and gilt prices are down $2 this week, despite strong lean hog futures. December contracts were up more than $6 this week. Pork cutout values are down nearly $2 this week, with weakness in all components.
• Cold Storage – We continue to see growth in overall meat supplies in freezers. Although, the rate of growth in September has slowed. There 509 million pounds of beef at the end of September, 2.5 percent higher than a year ago. However, 589 million pounds of pork in storage was 4.8 percent smaller than a year ago. Ham inventories dropped by 7.5 percent relative to year-ago levels. Brown talks about some of the reasons behind the drop in this month’s production. Chicken supplies continue to be beyond burdensome with supplies sitting at 959 million pounds, more than 17 percent above year-ago levels.
• Livestock Slaughter – Total beef, pork, and chicken production for the 3rd Quarter is 2.3 percent higher than year-ago levels. That is the slowest quarterly growth since 4th Quarter of 2014. Individually, beef production was only 1.3 percent above year-ago levels, the slowest growth since the 3rd Quarter of 2015. Pork production was only up 1.2 percent relative to a year ago. But, chicken production grew by 3.6 percent in the 3rd Quarter, the second fastest quarter growth since 3rd Quarter of 2015.
• Next week’s reports – Restaurant Performance Index on Wednesday and Job’s Report on Friday.
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