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CME update: cattle futures and beef prices tumble

19 June 2020

US live cattle futures fell on 18 June as commodities and boxed beef prices face increasing pressure from rebounding production.

Reuters reports the beef output has increased as meat companies raise slaughter rates after temporary closures in April and May due to COVID-19 cases among workers.

The USDA reports that beef processors killed an estimated 120,000 cattle on 18 June, up from 117,000 cattle a week earlier. Prior to the pandemic, they killed as many as 124,000 cattle on a day.

Prices for choice cuts of boxed beef fell by $4.29 to $213.64 per cwt, while select cuts slid $2.02 to $206.06 per cwt, according to the USDA.

Chicago Mercantile Exchange August live cattle futures settled down 0.750 cent at 96.100 cents per pound. August feeder cattle futures settled down 0.600 cent at 132.975 cents per pound.

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