Cattle Close Mixed on Wednesday

Family rounding up cows cattle ranching in pasture

Live cattle futures were down a tick to 60 cents in the 2024 contracts on Wednesday with the 2025 futures up 7 to 45 cents. Cash action has been quiet this week. The Central Stockyards Fed Cattle Exchange saw no sales on the 1,376 head listed, with bids at $181 and asks at $184. Feeder cattle were pulling back at midweek, with contract down 2 to 70 cents, as April was an exception, up 7 cents. The CME Feeder Cattle index was $1.27 higher on April 16 to $241.36. 

Cattle on Feed data will be released on Friday, with the trade expecting to see March placements down 7% from a year ago. Marketings during the month are projected to be 11.9% lower vs. March 2023.  April 1 on feed inventory is seen up 2.1% from last year. 

USDA’s Wholesale Boxed Beef prices were lower in the Wednesday afternoon report. Choice boxes were down $1.24 to $296.78, with Select $1.76 lower to $290.88. That took the Chc/Sel spread to $5.90. Wednesday’s USDA estimated cattle slaughter was pegged at 124,000, taking the week to date total to 369,000 head. That is up 11,000 head from the previous week and down 7,567 head from the same week last year. 

Apr 24 Live Cattle  closed at $180.900, down $0.600,

Jun 24 Live Cattle  closed at $175.325, down $0.400,

Aug 24 Live Cattle  closed at $172.775, down $0.150,

Apr 24 Feeder Cattle  closed at $240.425, up $0.075,

May 24 Feeder Cattle  closed at $240.275, down $0.700,

Aug 24 Feeder Cattle  closed at $252.125, down $0.225,

On the date of publication, Alan Brugler did not have (either directly or indirectly) positions in any of the securities mentioned in this article. All information and data in this article is solely for informational purposes. For more information please view the Barchart Disclosure Policy here.