Fed Cattle Recap | Cash market remains resilient

Cash prices for fed cattle hold the line on slightly more volume.


Ed Czerwien, BEEF Magazine

Aug 06, 2019


The cash market for fed cattle set a steady tone for the week ending August 3. Well, sort of. The weighted average price for the Five Area region was mostly steady to just a little higher with a little more cash sales volume but there were smaller numbers of early sales that were lower priced.


In addition, the market is showing the effect of very current on-feed numbers, especially in the north, where prices are showing a differential to southern states. While packers still hold a degree of leverage, tighter cattle numbers and continued lower carcass weights are keeping some wind under the wings of live prices.


Looking first a volume, the Five Area formula sales volume totaled 244,397 head, compared with about 263,000 the previous week. The Five Area total cash steer and heifer volume was 79,840 head, which compares with about 72,000 head the previous week.


Nationally reported forward contract cattle harvest was about 46,000 head for the week. Packers have 226,000 head lined up for August. National cash sales for the week included about 23,000 head of 15- to 30-=day delivery but also packers also had 5,000 head from the previous week.


Now looking at prices, the Five Area weekly weighted average cash steer price for the week ending August 3 was $113.82 per cwt, which was 14 cents higher and very close to steady.  


The weighted average cash dressed steer price was $184.30 per cwt, 93 cents higher.  The Five Area weighted average formula price was $182.01, 18 cents higher. The Five Area region...


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