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AGRICULTURAL NEWS OF THE WEEK Number 112 Wednesday, February 20, 1952 Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas L I VE S T O C K ON FARMS A MD R A N C HES The USDA released th is week it s annual report on livesto ck and poultry on farms and ranches as of the f i r s t of the year. The report shows that liv e stock and poultry in the U.3. increased h% during 1951. The upturn was maFked by a su bstan tial increase in ca ttle numbers to a new record high of 88 m illion head. Modest increases took place in hogs, sheep, and chicken numbers, and • turkeys were notably higher. Milk cows were down about 1% from the previous year. Horse and mule numbers continued to d eclin e. Farm value of livesto ck and poultry on U .3. farms reached a record of $19,6 billTorron January 1 , 1952, lh% above la s t year, the previous high. The drought in the Eleventh D is tr ic t in 1951 caused considerable liqu idation of livesto ck inventories. "However, in the case "of beef c a ttle there was s u ffic ie n t expansion in numbers in eastern parts of the DisTrTct” o~~mSre than offset reductions in the d rie r areas in the west. Texas farmers and ranchers held 7 , 887,000 beef ca ttle on January 1 , or about 1% more than a year e a r lie r . Increases in beef c a ttle numbers occurred also in Oklahoma, Louisiana, New Mexico, and Arizona, M ilk cow inventories in Texas declined 7 %, or to 1,053,000 head. There was a fu rth er- reduction also in Oklahoma, New Mexico, and Arizona. Louisiana reported a 2% increase. Sheep and lamb inventories in the D is tr ic t experienced a sharp reduction la st year. Texas farmers and ranchers on January 1, 1952, held 6,071,000 stock sheep, or 10% le ss than a year e a r lie r . There was also a decline of 7% in Arizona, while other states of th e -D istric t showed an increase of about 5% each. Hog inventories declined in Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Texas in 1951, but increased s lig h tly in Arizona and New Mexico. Texas farmers held 1,61*5,000 hogs on January 1, 1952, or 5% below a year e a r lie r . Texas goats decreased 6%, during 1951 • On January 1, 1952, there were 2 , 099,000 head on hand, compared with a record 3 , 1*65*000 in 191*2, Farm inventories of chickens (excluding commercial broilers) in the D is tric t experienced only minor changes during 1951. The expansion in chicken production in th is area in recent years has been confined almost e n tire ly to the output of commercial b r o ile rs. Turkey production in the D is tr ic t la s t year was at a record le v e l; there were 51*9,000 turkeys on Texas farms on January 1, compared with 508,000 a year ago. Sim ilar increases occurred in other states of the D is tr ic t. C OMMODITY MARKETS The gradual downward movement of spot co tton p r ices continues. Middling 15/16-inch cotton on the D allas Cotton Exchange closed la s t week at 39.25^ per pound, compared with 1*0.75 a week e a r lie r and 1*1.65 3- month ago. The market on Tuesday o f th is week closed 5 points higher. Merchant and shipper demand continues very s e le c tiv e , while domestic m ill demand is q u iet, Cottonseed prices to producers declined la s t week to about $71.10 per ton, compared with the season’ s peak of about $78,00 in November. Prices on the Fort Worth grain market on Tuesday of th is week v,rere up slig h tly from a week ago. On Tuesday, February 19, No. 1 hard wheat closed at $2.75-3/1* per bushel - up 2# from a week e a r lie r - and at about the same le v e l as a month ago* AGRICULTURAL NEWS OF THE WEEK___________________________________ Wednesday, February 20, 1952 Number 112 Page 2 No. 2 yellow corn sold Tuesday at $2.12 per bushel, up 20 from la s t week, but 60 under a month ago. No. 2 white corn brought $2,32-1/2, 16-1/20 under a month e a r lie r c No. 2 yellow milo (sorghum grain) is holding f a ir ly steady at $3.13 to $3.15 per cwt•, although several cents below prices the la s t week in January. Texas rough and m illed rice markets are holding firm although trading is at a slow pace. Most o ffers to buy rough rice are at levels below government price support , but a few sales are being made. • .... . Some weakness is- reported in ca ttle prices at the Fort Worth market. Most Good and Choice slaughter steers and' yearlings sold Tuesday at $30.00-33.00, with Medium and Good stockers and feeders at $27.00-33.00, and Choice yearlings at $3 3 . 00- 3 )4 . 00 . ■ Calf trading was slow Tuesday; Good and Choice slaughter offerin gs brought $30.00-3U .00. Butcher hogs were mostly 250 lower on Tuesday. Choice 130-275 pounders /averaged $1 8 .00-18.25# •U t ilit y to Choice shorn slaughter lambs were traded in Fort Worth Tuesday at $25,00-25.75; feeder lambs brought'$17.00-25.50. Poultry' and egg markets are weaker th is week. Prices of commercia l fryers on the Fort Worth market are down 20, as compared with la s t week. B roilers in East Texas are bringing 290 th is week, compared with la s t week’ s close o f 30 0 . ■ 1 ' .* Graded and candled eggs in the Fort Worth wholesale market are quoted at $ 9 . 00- 1 0 ,5 0 per case, or $ 1 .0 0 to $)r.00 under a month ago. There were no sales of Texas wools reported in lo c a l markets la s t week. However, spot wool on the New York market on Tuesday of th is week was down to $l,i|. 0- 1 /2 per pound, compared with $ 1 .5 3 la s t week and with a high of $1 .8 0 in January. Mohair was contracted in Texas la s t week at $1.01-1/2 per pound fo r adult and $1.26-1/2 fo r kid mohair. Spot trading in lo c a l mohair markets remained q u ie t. ' MI S C E L L A NE O U S ' ’ The U3DA has announced price support fo r the 1952 rice crop at not less than $ 5 .Oil. per 100 pounds. Actual support rate w ill be determined"Tater. Support fo r the 1951 crop was at $5 .0 0 per 100 pounds. Prices of the 1952 dry edible bean crop w ill be supported at a national average support le v e l o f approximately 05?"of the January 15, 1952 parity price fo r dry edible" beans. Support prices vary according to class and area in which grown. Milk production 'in 1952 probably w ill not exceed that of 1951, says the BAE. I t is expected that dairy prices to farmers, which in January averaged about a tenth higher than in the same month of 1 9 5 1 , w ill continue during 1952 at levels somewhat higher than a year e a r lie r . Production of winter cabbage in Texas th is season is estimated at O6,lj.00 ton s, compared with 56,000 in 1951 "and the 19 l|l -5 0 average of 158,800 tons. Winter production of lettu ce in Texas is estimated at 600,000 crates vs. 850.000 la s t season. , The Texas winter carrot crop is estimated at 2,775,000 bushels - up 75 .0 0 0 from la s t season. • W. M. P r it c h e t t A g r ic u lt u r a l Economist