Agriculture Market Summary
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Texas Agriculture Market Summary 4/28/14

Posted 10 years 32 days ago by

  • Feeder cattle mostly steady; futures higher.
  • Fed cattle cash trade $1 lower; futures higher; beef prices lower.
  • Cotton cash prices unchanged; futures higher.
  • Grains and soybeans higher.
  • Crude oil and natural gas lower.
  • Stock markets lower.


Texas auctions reported feeder cattle prices were mostly steady, with West noting prices $2-$5 lower on plain and fleshy offerings. Texas direct feeder cattle sales were steady on cattle weighing less than 800 pounds and steady to $3 higher on heavier weights. Feeder cattle futures were higher in spite of higher corn futures. The Texas fed cattle cash trade was nearly $1 lower on 2,600 head of confirmed sales. Prices in were reported steady in Kansas and lower in Nebraska. Wholesale boxed beef values were lower. Estimated cattle slaughter for the week was up from last week, but still well below year-ago levels. Cumulative 2014 cattle slaughter is running 6.4% behind this time last year. Fed cattle futures were higher.

USDA released its monthly Cattle on Feed report Friday showing 10.9 million head of cattle in feedlots, down 1% from a year ago and at the low end of pre-report expectations. Placements on feed during March totaled 1.8 million head, 5% below 2013 and also at the low end of expectations. Marketings of 1.66 million head were down 4% and also lower than expected. Texas had 2.5 million of cattle on feed, down 3% from April 2013 and tied with Nebraska as the top cattle feeding state in the nation. Placements were down 11% and marketings were 10%  lower.

Cotton cash prices were unchanged and futures were mostly slightly higher as there was little fresh news to move the market much in either direction. Traders remain concerned about the very dry conditions on the Texas High Plains. The entire are is suffering from extreme and exceptional drought, and there is not any relief in sight. Farmers in the region intend to plant more cotton this year, but failed acres and abandonment will be high unless they get very timely rains.

Wheat prices were higher on Friday due to concerns about the dry conditions on the U.S. Plains and ongoing tensions in Ukraine.

Corn and grain sorghum prices followed soybeans and wheat higher. Traders were concerned that there could be additional planting delays and noted that forecasts included a chance for severe weather over the weekend in some areas. Analysts noted that just as worries and rumors over planting delays are supporting corn prices now, reports of significant crop progress or weak export data could send them lower in a hurry.

Stock markets closed lower on Friday in spite of mostly-bullish news. Reports noted that investors continued to sell riskier, mostly high-tech, stocks and that short-term investors grew more skittish about tensions in Ukraine going into the weekend. A leading consumer sentiment index for April came in higher than expected. Microsoft posted better than expected first quarter results. Visa reported higher than expected first quarter profits, but “disappointing revenue growth.” Amazon reported profits that were in line with estimate on stronger than expected revenue. But its stock fell anyway. Ford posted weaker than expected earnings.

Disclaimer: The information compiled in the Daily Market Summary is obtained from a variety of sources, including those available on the Internet, that are believed to be reliable and accurate, but are in no way guaranteed. This information is intended to provide only a summary of market trends and a daily snapshot of agricultural markets and economic indicators. It should not be relied upon as a sole source of market information. Commentary is the author’s alone and does not in any way convey official TDA policies.