It may not be led by a Sousa march, but the drumbeat of a bullish cash fed cattle market keeps beating as prices march higher and higher. The finished cattle trade was $1 to $3 higher once again for the week ending March 25.
Estimated total federally-inspected cattle harvest was 613,000 head for the week, compared with 538,000 head the same week last year, for an increase of about 75,000 head over last year.
The weekly weighted average cash steer price for the Five Area region, which includes the major feeding areas of Texas, Kansas, Nebraska, Colorado and Iowa, was $130.91, compared with $128.64 the previous week, which was $2.27 higher.
The Five Area weighted average cash dressed steer price was $210.99, compared with $207.94 the previous week, for an increase of about $3.05.
The Five Area total cash steer and heifer volume was 94,924 head, compared with about 110,934 the previous week.
The Five Area average formula price was $202.11, compared with $199.65 the previous week, for a slight gain of 2.46 cents. Five Area formula sales totaled 141,371, compared with about 168,225 the previous week.
Nationally reported forward contract cattle harvest was about 51,000 head, compared with 48,000 the previous week. Packers have more than 213,000 head of forward contracts available for March, along with over 343,000 for April.
The latest average national steer carcass weight for week ending March 11 was 5 pounds at 881 pounds, compared to 896 pounds last year.
The Choice-Select spread was $6.07 on Friday, about $2.88 lower compared with the previous week and a $9.47 spread last year.