TDA Market Recap
AUSTIN -- For the week ending March 22, feeder cattle prices reported by Texas auctions ranged from $8 lower to $9 higher per hundredweight (cwt) compared to their previous sale. Texas direct feeder cattle prices were steady to $1 higher on cattle weighing less than 800 pounds, but lower on heavier-weight offerings. Tight supplies and strong demand continue to support the feeder cattle market, but prices also fluctuate depending on the types and condition of cattle being sold and specific buyer requirements at each particular sale on a particular day. Fed cattle cash prices were $2 higher at a near record-high $150 per cwt. Wholesale prices for Choice-grade beef set a new record high on March 18 then declined to end the week modestly lower.
Cotton prices were higher due to ongoing concerns about the dry conditions on the Texas High Plains and tight domestic supplies.
Wheat prices for the week were higher amid growing concerns about dry conditions in U.S. winter wheat areas and a decline in crop condition ratings.
Little rain fell anywhere in the state last week with totals of 1/2 inch or more limited to scattered locations in East and Central Texas. Last week’s U.S. Drought Monitor showed overall conditions in Texas near unchanged, with the area of the state rated as abnormally dry or in drought holding steady at 85 percent. Parts of West, South, and Southeast Texas remain drought-free. By category, areas rated abnormally dry and in severe drought declined, while areas in moderate and severe drought expanded. Areas rated in exceptional drought were near unchanged.
Nationally, 51 percent of the contiguous states were reported in some degree of abnormal dryness or drought, down slightly from a week ago.
Texas Cash Markets for the week ending March 22:
•Feeder steers, $172.77/cwt
•Fed cattle, $150.05/cwt
•Slaughter lambs, $188/cwt
•Slaughter goats, $247/cwt
•Grain sorghum, $8.60/cwt
•Cabbage, $7.00/50 lbs.
•Feeder cattle, $175.02/cwt
•Fed cattle, $144.00/cwt
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.