TDA Market Recap
AUSTIN -- For the week ending April 5, feeder cattle prices reported by Texas auctions were mostly steady to $5 higher per hundredweight (cwt) compared to their previous sale. Some locations were as much as $15 higher, but a few were $4 lower on a portion of their offerings. Texas direct feeder cattle prices were $1 to $4 higher. Tight supplies and strong demand continue to support the feeder cattle market. Fed cattle cash prices were $2 lower at $148 per cwt. Wholesale beef values were lower.
Wheat prices were lower as beneficial rains fell in parts of the winter wheat belt. However, rainfall totals have been light and most of the area remains in severe to exceptional drought.
Corn and grain sorghum prices were higher due to expectations for lower plantings this year, concerns about possible planting delays in some areas, strong exports and good domestic demand. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) reported that U.S. farmers intend to plant 4 percent fewer acres of corn this year, potentially the smallest corn acreage since 2010, but still the fifth largest on record.
Last week’s U.S. Drought Monitor showed little change in overall conditions in Texas, with the area of the state rated as abnormally dry or in drought, down less than a percentage point at 85 percent. However, there was a shift to the more-severe drought categories as areas rated in extreme and exceptional drought increased, but other categories declined. Parts of West, South, and Southeast Texas remain drought-free. Nationally, conditions worsened slightly, with 53 percent of the contiguous states reported in some degree of abnormal dryness or drought, up 1 percent from a week ago.
Texas Cash Markets for the week ending April 5:
•Feeder steers, $171.88/cwt
•Fed cattle, $148.16/cwt
•Slaughter lambs, $165/cwt
•Slaughter goats, $232.50/cwt
•Grain sorghum, $8.91/cwt
•Cabbage, $6.25/50 lbs.
•Feeder cattle, $177.70/cwt
•Fed cattle, $143.05/cwt
•Lumber, $328.40/1000 bd ft.
All cash prices above are market averages for locations covered by the USDA 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.