Blocks and Barrels Share Same Value, A Rare Occurrence
It is a rare day for block and barrel cheese to share the same value, but that's exactly what happened on Friday’s CME spot trade.
The price of barrels rose another 3 and ¼ cents on 20 loads to finish at $1.52 and block cheese rose a penny as well to finish also at $1.52. Just one load traded, though. The last time that this phenomenon had occurred was Dec. 19 of last year when during the course of trade, the price of blocks outpaced barrels in a race to the bottom. Looking at volume for the week, barrel cheese traded 62 total loads. All other products in the CME spot trade combined added up to 53.
Barrels where the clear and definite favorite among traders this past week. Elsewhere in the spot trade, butter fell 3/4 cents to finish at $2.26 and ¼ cents. Grade A nonfat dry milk was unchanged at 81 and ¾ cents, no trades were tendered. That was also true of whey. It did not trade either, but it did rise a penny and ¼ cents. It finishes at 42 and ½ cents. That is the single highest settlement that has occurred since whey was introduced in mid-March.
Average weekly prices for spot products finished as follows: butter $2.25 and ½ cents, block cheese just over $1.51 and ¾ cents, barrels just over $1.43 and ½ cents, Grade A nonfat just under 80 and ¾ cents and dry whey just over 41 and ½ cents. For its average, Class III prices were uninspired by the positive spot trade, finishing 4 cents higher and its average from August through December at $15.76. Class IV markets remained unchanged for that period at $14.96.