TDA market recap: Feb. 1
AUSTIN -- For the week ending Feb. 1, Texas feeder cattle auctions reported prices $4 lower to $8 higher per hundredweight (cwt). Texas direct feeder cattle prices were steady to $3 lower. Fed cattle cash prices declined $2.50 from the previous week’s record-high, averaging $144.62 on a light sales volume. Wholesale beef values were sharply lower, with choice-grade offerings down $6.50 from the record high set the previous Wednesday. Beef export sales totaled 10,600 metric tons (MT) last week, down 26 percent from the previous week and down 39 percent from the prior four-week average.
Cotton prices were modestly higher due to another strong weekly exports report. Cotton export sales for the week were down 3 percent from the previous week, but were still the second highest of the marketing year and more than double the prior four-week average.
Corn and grain sorghum prices were higher as solid export data continued to support the market. Corn export sales totaled 1.8 million MT last week, 2.5 times higher than the previous week and more than four times higher than the four-week average.
Wheat prices were lower as large world supplies continue to pressure the market and in spite of strong export sales and concerns about freeze damage. Wheat export sales for the week were 794,900 MT, nearly double the previous week and nearly three times higher than the average.
Most of the state recorded precipitation during the week, with totals of one-half inch or more reported in parts of North Texas, East Texas, and the Lower Rio Grande Valley. Last week’s U.S. Drought Monitor showed further deterioration in conditions in Texas, with the area of the state rated as abnormally dry or in drought up four points to 81 percent. The areas rated in moderate, severe, and extreme drought increased and the percentage in exceptional drought held unchanged. It has been more than three years, since early November 2010, that more than half the state has been rated in some degree of drought.
Nationally, 56 percent of the contiguous states were reported in some degree of abnormal dryness or drought, up three points from a week ago. There are growing concerns about drought conditions in California. Officials there have said that their agricultural sector stands to lose more than $5 billion if they do not get relief soon.
Texas Cash Markets for the week ending Feb. 1:
•Feeder steers, $164.74/cwt
•Fed cattle, $144.62/cwt
•Slaughter lambs, $192/cwt
•Slaughter goats, $241/cwt
•Grain sorghum, $7.61/cwt
•Cabbage, $8.25/50 lbs
•Feeder cattle, $169.42/cwt
•Fed cattle, $141.67/cwt
•Lumber, $353.80/1000 bd ft.
The cash prices above are market averages for locations covered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture Market News program and do not reflect any particular sale at any specific location.
Feeder cattle prices are for Texas direct sales of 650-850 pound medium and large No. 1 steers for current delivery. Futures prices are quoted for the nearest month contract on the last trading day of the week.
For more information, contact TDA at 1-800-835-5832 or visit, www.TexasAgriculture.gov or from “Links” at http://www.wilson countynews.com.