TDA Market Recap
AUSTIN -- For the week ending March 15, Texas feeder cattle auctions reported prices mostly steady to $5 higher per hundredweight (cwt), with a few locations as much as $10 higher, but some as much as $6 lower. Texas direct feeder cattle prices were steady to $4 higher. Fed cattle cash prices held steady at $148 per cwt. Wholesale beef values set new record highs last week, with Choice-grade cuts averaging $241.51 on March 12. Tight supplies and strong demand continued to support the entire cattle sector, but some fluctuations are also to be expected.
Cotton cash prices were higher due to concerns about the dry conditions on the Texas High Plains and tight domestic supplies. However, gains were limited by large world supplies and expectations for higher U.S. cotton plantings this spring.
Wheat prices for the week were higher amid ongoing concerns about dry conditions in U.S. winter wheat areas and the potential for higher U.S. exports due to the turmoil in Ukraine.
Most of the state, except for the Big Bend region and much of the Panhandle, recorded precipitation last week. Totals of one-half inch or more were common in much of North, East, and South Central Texas. Last week’s U.S. Drought Monitor showed another improvement in conditions in Texas, with the area of the state rated as abnormally dry or in drought down 6 percentage points to 85 percent. The drought-free areas in West, South, and Southeast Texas expanded, but the area in Northeast Texas slipped into abnormal dryness. Overall, the areas rated in severe, extreme, and exceptional drought increased, while abnormally dry and moderate drought areas declined. Nationally, 52 percent of the contiguous states were reported in some degree of abnormal dryness or drought, down 1 point from a week ago.
Texas Cash Markets for the week ending March 15:
•Feeder steers, $169.01/cwt
•Fed cattle, $148.03/cwt
•Slaughter lambs, $194/cwt
•Slaughter goats, $252/cwt
•Grain sorghum, $8.72/cwt
•Cabbage, $8.50/50 lbs.
•Feeder cattle, $174.60/cwt
•Fed cattle, $145.25/cwt
•Corn, $4.72 /bu
All 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. Timber prices are from the Texas A&M Forest Service, bimonthly “Texas Timber Price Trends.” For additional information, contact the Texas Department of Agriculture at 800-835-5832 or visit www.TexasAgriculture.gov.