Commodities & Metals

Beef, Eggs Lead December Farm Price Gains

cattle beef pastureThe U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) released its preliminary report on December farm prices Tuesday afternoon. The all-products price index rose 1% month-over-month to 102, with the crop index up 2% and the livestock index down 5%. The December all-products index is up two points year-over-year. The index uses prices from 2011 as its base value (100).

The USDA noted that December’s higher prices for corn, eggs, wheat and cattle offset lower prices for milk, broilers, lettuce and oranges. Prices paid by farmers in the month fell to 106, five index points lower compared with December 2013.

The price farmers received for livestock is 15% higher than it was a year ago, and the price for meat animals is 27% higher. The December hog price is down $0.20 per hundredweight since November, but up $5 compared with December 2013. Beef prices are up $38 per hundredweight compared with the December 2013 price and up $1 compared with last month.

Both corn and wheat prices remain significantly lower than they were a year ago, with year-over-year all-wheat prices down $0.20 a bushel at $6.53 and feed corn down $0.64 at $3.77 a bushel.

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Dairy prices are down 11% month-over-month and down 7.3% year-over-year. Market egg prices rose $0.29 compared with November prices to $1.66 a dozen. A dozen eggs has jumped $0.45 in a year, a rise of 27%.

The prices farmers paid for feeder pigs rose $11 to $217 per hundredweight in December. Feeder cattle prices fell $5 per hundredweight to $253 in October.

Here is how some agriculture-related exchange traded funds traded Tuesday:

The Market Vectors Agribusiness ETF (NYSEMKT: MOO) was down about 0.3%, at $52.99 in a 52-week range of $49.21 to $56.03.

The PowerShares DB Agriculture Fund (NYSEMKT: DBA) traded down about 0.6%, at $25.07 in a 52-week range of $24.04 to $29.41.

The Teucrium Corn Fund (NYSEMKT: CORN) was down about 1.4%, at $27.18 in a 52-week range of $22.62 to $35.79.

The Teucrium Wheat Fund (NYSEMKT: WEAT) traded down about 1.8% on Tuesday, at $12.94 in a 52-week range of $10.62 to $17.55.

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