Weekly market wrap up from the U.S. Department of Agriculture
March 18, 2016
Compared to last week, calves and stocker cattle traded mostly firm to 5.00 higher with instances 10.00 higher. Yearling feeders over 800 pounds traded mostly 2.00-5.00 higher. With spring temperatures across most of the country "grass fever" continues in full swing with confidence boosting the market. Signals from last week's higher fed cattle market, cattle futures staying in positive territory and surging boxed-beef values have help to keep the uptrend intact. Over the past several weeks CME livestock futures have been driven by strong support after a long winding and rocky road have continued to make headway without giving too much back. The cattle futures now have to contend with holding at levels that are highs for the year and could be due for a technical pull back. With March arriving like a lamb, calf and stocker buyers with spring pastures to graze are making their way to the salebarn or a phone call to their favorite order buyer. These"buy-em" orders can be very particular like when the right kind of cattle come up for sale mostly long time weaned and fully vaccinated with thin-fleshed and empty weighing conditions usually fit the bill. In St. Joseph, Mo. at the stockyards on Wednesday saw a pot load of top quality thin black steers weighing 675 pounds drop the gavel at 197.50. By the time green grass actually gets here these type of calves and stockers will be long gone, so buyers are collecting them while they're still available. Last week's higher dressed sales at 220.00 in the North and live sales in the South mostly 2.00 higher at 138.00 help to fuel this week's feeder prices higher.