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Number 274

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A_G_R_F

Wednesday, March 30, 1955

LIVESTOCK
Lamb prices at Fort Worth during the week ended Friday, March 25, were
the highest since last-Spring, reflecting the incr8ased consumer demand for lamb
at the Easter season. Milk-fat lambs brought $26 per cwt. - $2 higher than a week
earlier - as local packers and order buyers for the eastern seaboard and other parts
of the country bid for the available supplies. Cattle~ calf receipts at Fort
Worth were smaller than a week earlier as a result of storms and rains throughout
the Southwest. Prices were $1 or more per cwt. higher than those received during
the previous week. Hog supplies also were lower than a week earlier; the week's
top price for butcher hogs was $18 per cwt.
Receipts of cattle and calves at Fort Worth on Monday, March 28, were
estimated to be more than twice-as large as the small supply on Monday of last week
and were 21% above those on the comparable date a year ago, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Most of the cattle receipts were yearlings. Good and
Choice beef steers sold at $19 to $2J.50 per cwt., with Utility and Corrrrnercial grades
bringing $13 to $18. Prices for most beef cows ranged from $12 to $13. Medium and
Good stocker and feeder cattle were $15 to $21 per cwt., with a few Choice yearlings
quoted at $21.50 to ~22. Practically all classes and grades of calves brought steady
prices. Good and Choice slaughter calves ranged from $18 to $21, and Medium and Good
stocker and feeder steer calves were $15 to $21. Receipts of hogs at Fort Worth on
Monday were 200 head more than on the same day a week earlier.~ading was active,
with butcher hogs selling at 50¢ to 75¢ per cwt. higher than on Friday of last week.
Choice 190- to 240-lb. butcher hogs brought $18 and $18.25. Sheep and lamb supplies
were the largest since May 1950, Trading was slow and uneven, with Good and Choice
spring lambs quoted at $23.50 to $25.
POULTRY
During the week ended Friday, March 25, price peaks were reached in Texas
broiler markets which were the highest since the latter part of 1952, according to
the Texas Department of Agriculture. Closing prices for the week, at mostly 2¢ per
lb. higher than the previous week's close, were: South Texas, 31¢; east Texas, 32¢;
Waco, 32¢; and the Corsicana F.O.B. plant, 33¢ per lb.
Trading in Texas broiler markets was moderate to normal on Monday, March 28,
with the following-Prices received: South Texas, 31¢ to 32¢ per lb.; east Texas and""
Waco, 32¢; and the Corsicana F.O.B. plant, 33¢.
Broiler~ placeme~ on Texas farms totaled 1,527,000 during the week
ended March 19, according to the ANS. This is 2% above placements in the previous
week but 10% below those during the corresponding week a year earlier.
Output from Texas commercial hatcheries in February was 20% lower than
during the same month a year earlier, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The total number of chicks hatched was estimated at 8,250,000, compared
with 10,300,000 during the comparable month a year ago and the 1943-52 February
average of 8,919,000 chicks.
WOOL AND
MOHAIR
Several cars of spot 12-month wool were sold in Texas at clean prices
ranging from $1.50 to $1.58 per lb. during the week ended Friday, March 25, according to the AMS. About 8 to 10 cars of Texas mohair were sold during the week at

top prices of 66.5¢ per lb. for adult and $1.06~ for kid mohair. Shearing of goats
in the State was delayed by cold, stormy weather.
Secretary of Agriculture Benson announced on March 18 that he had entered
into an agreement with the American Sheep Producers Council providing for advertising, promotional, and related market development activities under the 1954 National
Wool Acto The agreement is subject to approval of sheep and wool producers voting
in a referendum to be held this sunrrner, and in order for it to become effective, a
favorable vote is required from producers who account for at least two-thirds of the
number of sheep or production of wool. Payments not to exceed 1¢ per lb. of wool
would be provided for use in the promotional activities designed to enlarge or improve the market for domestically produced wool and lambs. These payments would be
deducted from any incentive payments growers would receive from the wool they marketed.
COTTON
Trading in southwestern cotton markets continued slow, and prices remained
fairly steady throughout the week ended Friday, March 25. According to reports, producers are placing a moderate volume of cotton under loan.
Cold weather delayed cotton planting in south-central Texas counties du r ing the week. In the Lower Rio Grande Valley and the Coastal Bend of Texas, a large
acreage of cotton is up to a stand. Preliminary reports indicate that some young
cotton in the upper coastal area of Texas was damaged by the freeze during the past
·week end.
Middling 15/1611 staple on the Dallas market on Monday, March 28, was
32.65¢ per lb. - an average of 10 points below a week earlier and~¢-Per lb.
lower than on the comparable date in 1954.
Cotton ginned in Oklahoma and Texas during the 1954-55 season averaged
higher in grade but shorter in staple length than that ginned in the previous
season, according to the USDA.
MISCELLANEOUS
On March 16, the USDA reduced price supports for 1955-crop soybeans, flaxseed, and cottonseed in order to discourage excessive production of these crops:--This year's crop of soybeans will be supported at 70% of parity, or a national average of $2.04 per bu., compared with 80% of parity, or $2.22 per bu., in 1954. Flaxseed and cottonseed will be supported at 65% of parity, compared with 70% during the
past year. The national average support price for flaxseed will be $2.91 per bu.
compared with $3.14 per bu. in 1954, and that for cottonseed, $46 per ton compared
with $54 per ton for the previous year's crop. As in the past, price supports on
soybeans and cottonseed will be through loans and purchase agreements. In the case
of cottonseed, the price support program will be through loans on farm-stored cottonseed and purchases from producers and participating processors. Loans on farm-stored
cottonseed will average $46 per ton; the purchase price for cottonseed bought from
producers will average $42 per ton.
The USDA announced on March 11 that the national average support price for
1955-crop dry edible beans will be $6.36 per cwt. - 70% of the February lS paritypriceof$9 .08 per cwt-:--

J. z. Rowe
Agricultural Economist