TDA Market Recap Dec. 22

AUSTIN – (Dec. 22, 2014) For the week ending Dec. 20, 2014, Texas auctions quoted feeder cattle prices $3 to $10 lower per hundredweight (cwt). Texas direct feeder cattle sales were $5 to $12 lower. Fed cattle cash sales were inactive Thursday and Friday, though the week did see another dip in price, down to $157 per cwt. Texas formula trades were unevenly priced during the week. Wholesale beef values were lower to sharply lower. Weekly export sales were up ten percent from last week, but down three percent from the prior weeks’ averages. Export shipments were down one percent from the previous week, but ten percent higher than average.

Cotton cash and futures prices were higher, with futures closing 35 points higher than last week at 60.89 cents per pound. Export cotton sales were 55 percent lower from last week and 58 percent lower from the prior four-week average. Shipments were ten percent lower than last week, but up 49 percent from the weekly average.

Wheat prices were lower on Friday as the talk about uncertainty in Russia eases. However, wheat futures on Thursday did reach their highest point in over six months. Net export sales for wheat were up eight percent from last week and 23 percent from the prior four-week average. Shipments were up 25 percent from the previous week and 12 percent from the weekly average.

Corn prices remained unchanged and grain sorghum prices settled a cent lower. USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack did confirm China’s approval of the MIR 162 corn trait by Syngenta. Corn export sales were down 28 percent from the previous week and 30 percent from the four-week average. Export shipments were 11 percent higher than last week and 24 percent higher from the average.

Most of the state recorded precipitation during the week. Totals over one inch were inclusively east of I-35, with southeast Texas receiving two or more inches of rain.  This week’s U.S. Drought Monitor (click here for the Texas map or here for the U.S. map and summary) showed little to no change for the conditions in Texas with almost 67 percent of the state still in some stage of drought intensity. Twenty-three percent of the state remains in severe, extreme or exceptional drought, down 12 percent points from three months ago. On the national level, almost 50 percent of the U.S. is experiencing abnormal dryness or some degree of drought, up another one percent from last week.

In other news, the Federal Reserve announced on Wednesday that it will keep interest rates low for a “considerable time.”

This is the last TDA Market Recap for 2014. Reports will resume Jan. 5, 2015. Additional information on agricultural weather, crop progress and agricultural markets can be found on the TDA Market News page.

Week Ending Previous Previous
Texas Cash Markets: Dec. 20, 2014         Week           Year
Feeder Steers $/cwt 222.07 231.48 162.56
Fed Cattle $/cwt 157.00 164.00 130.00
Slaughter Lambs $/cwt 233.00 212.20 182.50
Slaughter Goats $/cwt 273.00 266.50 250.00
Cotton ¢/lb. 59.25 59.38 80.15
Grain Sorghum $/cwt 7.38 7.32 7.70
Wheat $/bu. 6.38 6.10 6.60
Corn $/bu. 4.46 4.46 4.91
Oranges $/carton 13.15 12.73 14.75
Grapefruit $/carton 12.23 12.23 17.80
Cabbage $/50 lbs. 8.75 9.50 10.20
Futures Markets:
Feeder Cattle $/cwt 220.15 225.60 166.97
Fed Cattle $/cwt 160.75 162.05 132.52
Cotton ¢/lb. 60.89 60.54 83.15
Wheat $/bu. 6.66 6.34 6.57
Corn $/bu. 4.11 3.96 4.33
Lumber $/MBF 340.60 340.30 373.60


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.” MBF = thousand board feet. For additional information, contact TDA at (800) 835-5832 or visit our website,
www.TexasAgriculture.gov.

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