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When expectations become reality

For the past few years, beef cattle producers have been receiving strong economic signals to increase the size of the nation's cow herd. While recent market prices have been historically high, expansion has been limited across much of the country due to large areas of significant drought. However, the situation has changed to the point where drought conditions currently exist only in the far west and in the southern tip of Florida.


Access to China key factor in maintaining meat export growth

The U.S. red meat industry has achieved outstanding export growth in recent years, enhancing profitability for all members of the supply chain. In 2014, both beef exports ($7.13 billion) and pork exports ($6.67 billion) shattered previous records for export value. Beef exports have steadily increased in value in each of the 11 years since global markets began to reopen after the first U.S. case of BSE. For pork, export value has increased in 15 of the past 20 years.


Boxed Beef Report: Beef prices bouncing back

Choice boxed beef had a substantial increase on Thursday of $1.02 to hit $233.69. The jump brought the 27-day average price to $241.47. Select boxed beef prices also saw an increase from $229.14 on Wednesday to $229.30 on Thursday. The 16-cent raise brought the 27-day average price to $237.89.

Choice primal chuck saw the largest increase on Thursday of $2.95 to hit $195.79. Choice primal round was close behind with a $1.41 jump. Choice primal rib dropped a dollar to hit $320.14, bringing the 27-day average price to $336.38.


U.S. average retail gasoline and diesel fuel prices decrease

As crude oil prices and rig counts have fallen significantly since late 2014, changes in U.S. crude oil production statistics and trends have come into focus. EIA publishes several reports covering current crude oil production conditions and how recent trends may affect the near-term outlook for the oil industry (Figure 1). Each EIA product is distinct in its purpose, methodology, timeframe, and regional coverage. Some reports are estimates of actual production volumes, while others focus on future production.


Morning Farm Report: Livestock prices steady

Live catttle, feeder cattle and lean hog prices continue to see no change on Wednesday, still resting at $143.35, $208.75 and $28.28, respectively. Corn prices bounced back on Wednesday, jumping 20 cents to $3.93. Wheat prices saw no change.


Boxed Beef Report: Beef prices sinking

Choice boxed beef dropped again Wednesday to $232.67. The 53-cent decline brought the 27-day average price to $242.20. Select boxed beef prices saw a 30-cent fall, bringing the 27-day average price to $238.58.

Choice primal rib saw the largest fall on Wednesday, dropping $3.41 to hit $321.14. Choice primal short plate was not far behind with a fall of $2.67. Choice primal loin was the only cut to not fall, increasing $3.64 on Wednesday.


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