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Number 471

Wednesday, January 7, 1959

CR 0 P S
$ 1 • 5
B I L L I 0 N
The value of crops produced in Texas during 1958 is placed at $1.5 billion,
or nearly one-fourth greater than ~ year ago, reports the Agricultural Marketing Service. Increased output of cotton, grain crops, hay, peanuts, potatoes, soybeans,
and fruits, together with higher prices received for cotton and grain sorghums - the
two major cash crops - accounted for practically all of the gain. Cotton is still
King, with the total value of lint and seed surpassing the valuation placed on all
other crops combined. The Texas crops were harvested from 24.3 million acres, up
2% from the 1957 figure. Grains accounted for nearly all of the increase-rr;-acreage.
The 1958 crop year produced record-high yields per acre from such important crops
as wheat, cotton, grain sorghums, peanuts, and hay.
The index of prices received by the Nation's farmers declined 2% during
the month ended December 15, 1958, to 246% of the 1910-14 average, points out the
AMS.~er prices for cotton~trus fruits, tomatoes, hogs, eggs, and milk were
mainly responsible for the decrease. The mid-December index was slightly more than
1% above the year-earlier figure. The 1958 annual average was 255, reflecting a 5%
gain over the 1957 index.
The parity index {which reflects prices paid for commodities and services,
plus interest, taxes, and wage rates) held at its all-time peak of 308 and was 3%
higher than on December 15, 1957. Major changes during the past month were lower
prices for food, clothing, and feeder livestock and higher prices for feed, tractors,
and farm supplies. The 1958 annual average for the parity index was 305, compared
with 295 for 1957.
The parity ratio declined 1% in December to 80, or the lowest level since
February 1957.
P I G C R 0 P
The Nation's 1958 £.!& crop is estimated at 94.8 million head, or 8% above
the 1957 croE,, according to the AMS. The spring crop of 52,3 million was up 1%; the
~ crop of 42.S million was 17% larger than a year earlier and was the largest
since 1943. The increase in the fall pig crop resulted from a 16% gain in the ~­
ber of ~ farrowing and a small increase in the number of ~ saved per litter
to a fall crop record of 7.17.
Reports on breeding intentions indicate that approximately 8.3 million ~
~ expected!.£ farrow in the spring of 1959, or 12% more than the number farrowed
in the spring of 1958. If intentions for spring farrowings materialize and the number of pigs saved per litter is about equal to the 1947-56 average, the 1959 spring
pig crop will be about 59 million head. A crop of this size would be 13% above the
1958 level and the largest spring crop since 1951.

Moderate to small supplies of cattle and calves were received at !.2!! Worth
on Monday, January 1, points out the AMS. The cattle~ was approximately 2,200,
compared with 1,900 a week earlier and 3,400 on the corresponding date in 1958.
Trading on mature slaughter steers was slow and prices were mostly steady, while
trading on yearling steers and heifers was fairly active and prices were firm.
This publication was digitized and made available by the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas’ Historical Library (

Trading on stockers and feeders was moderately active, and prices were fully steady
with those on the preceding Wednesday (the last trading day prior to the New Year's
holiday). Good 700- to 1,100-lb. slaughter steers sold at $26 to $27.50 per cwt. ;
most Utility cows, $18 to $19; and Medium and Good 550- to 700-lb. stocker and fee der
steers, $24 to $28.
Calf marketings totaled about 400, or 33% above a week ago but 73% below
the year-earlier figure. Trading on slaughter calves was active, and prices were
around 50¢ higher than on the previous Wednesday. Good grades of slaughter calves
brought $28 to $30, and stocker and feeder steer calves cleared at $30 to $32.
Monday's hog receipts are placed at 500, which is 100 fewer than a week
earlier and 300 below the comparable date last year, After a late start, barrows
and gilts sold at prices which were 25¢ to 75¢ higher than on the past Wednesday's
market, U, s. No. 1 through No, 3 Grades of 195- to 245-lb, butchers were quoted
at $18.25 to $19, with most sales at $18,50 and $18.75.
Sheep and lamb offerings were around 4,000, or the largest supply since
~ 1958,
Lambs (mostly slaughter classes) comprised over 90% of the total receip ts
Prices of slaughter lambs were steady to fully 50¢ lower than in the middle of the
preceding week. Good and Choice 90- to 106-lb, shorn slaughter lambs with mostly
No. 1 pelts sold at $18 to $18.50,

P 0 UL T R Y
The principal ~ commercial broiler markets remained unchanged through
the holiday trading period ended Friday, January 1, reports the State Department of
Agriculture, The over-all trading volume was normal !Q heavy in south Texas and
mostly normal in~ Texas. Closing prices were: South Texas, 14¢ per lb,, and
east Texas, 13¢ to 14¢. In the latter area, 49% of the sales were at undetermined
prices. During the corresponding period in 1958, closing prices were 18¢ to 20¢,
mostly 19¢, in south Texas and 18¢ in east Texas,
The Texas commercial broiler markets were steady on Monday, January 1·
Trading was normal in south Texas and heavy in east Texas, with the following prices
quoted: South Texas, 15¢, and east Texas, 12~¢ to 14¢. In east Texas, 43% of the
sales were at undetermined prices,


Week ended
December 27, 1958

Percentage change from
week, 1957

Texas ••••••
Louisiana ••




22 states.,





During 1958, the Nation's farm families obtained loans from the Farmers
Home Administration amounting to $355.7 million, compared with $340 million in 195 7,
acCc;°rding to the u. s. Department of Agriculture. The increase resulted from an ~­
pansion of the farm housing loan program to build and repair farm dwellings and otbet
essential farm buildings. The total number of loans made during 1958 was approximately 107,600. An estimated 194,000 farmers used FHA credit during the current
year, including those who are still using loan funds but who did not borrow during
1958. Approximately 38,000 borrowers were able to obtain credit through other sourcew
and repaid their FHA loans in full.
J, z. Rowe
Agricultural Economist