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Live cattle futures settled 22 to 87.5 cents higher today, following gains of 60 to 85 cents on Wednesday. Dec15 cattle were the strongest today, and were up $2.125 on the weekly board. Feeder futures were 30 cents to $1.025 higher on Friday, after posting gains of 10 to 30 cents on Wednesday. Jan16 feeders were $2.38 higher from last Friday. The CME Feeder Cattle Index for 11/25 was 53 cents lower to $172.16. In its weekly Export Sales report, the USDA announced export sales of 8,500 MT of US beef through last Thursday 41% of which was sold to South Korea. Total sales declined by nearly 50% week over week, and recorded the smallest weekly total since the week ending August 13. Year to date commitments are 10.7% smaller than they were as of this week in 2014. The strong US dollar is an issue. A few cash cattle sales took place averaging $123 today. The USDA reported higher beef prices today. Choice boxes were 31 cents higher to $204.40, and select boxes were up $1.74 to $195.50. Beef production this week totaled 390 million pounds. Actual slaughter was 558,029 head during the week ending November 14, while dressed weights were steady at 846 pounds. FI slaughter with Saturday estimates was 462,000 head this week.
Dec 15 Cattle settled at $131.825, up $0.875,
Feb 16 Cattle settled at $133.850, up $0.725,
Apr 16 Cattle settled at $134.125, up $0.225,
Jan 16 Feeder Cattle settled at $166.025, up $1.025
Mar 16 Feeder Cattle settled at $163.675, up $0.525
Apr 16 Feeder Cattle settled at $165.125, up $0.300