Thomas Elwood: Early livestock comments
Light cattle trade was reported in Nebraska on Thursday at $156 to mostly $157 dressed. Texas and Kansas both saw additional cattle trade at $100.00 live, steady with Wednesday's trade. Depending on how many cattle ended up trading in Nebraska late on Thursday, activity could be over for the week. Packers bought large enough numbers last week that they didn't need to buy that many this week.
The choice cutout was up $0.89 at $162.26 last night, with the select down $0.59 at $153.96. Volume was extremely light again. We think packers will be forced into more aggressive discounting to move meat for quick ship since demand remains very sluggish. Keep in mind that retailers' attention turn to turkey during November and the beef often languishes as a result.
Cash hog bids are expected to be steady to mostly lower today, with a lot of bids $1.00 lower again. The industry isn't making any progress on the backlog and sources report that numbers for next week are bigger than they were for this week.
The pork cutout rebounded $0.82 last night despite persistent weakness in many cuts. Loins were quoted steady/weak. Butts were generally steady. Heavier hams managed to hold a steady tone, though sources expect more discounting to develop without additional export demand. Bellies were unquoted.