Milk Markets Remain Volatile
The volatility in the milk markets continued on Thursday. After watching the April Class III contract trade 18₵ lower on Monday, 36₵ higher on Tuesday, and 5₵ lower on Wednesday. Thursday’s trade dropped the April contract another 30₵ to $15.11 per CWT.
May and June also dropped 30₵ and 16₵ respectively. Second half prices also saw weakness with prices down 2₵ - 19₵ with July leading the way lower. Class IV markets only saw two months trade. December down 7₵ at $15.65 per CWT. January 2018 was down 5₵ to $15.54 per CWT.
CME spot dairy trade saw very little trading action outside of the cheddar blocks on Thursday. Cheddar blocks traded 6 times, a penny lower to $1.44 per pound. Barrels were unchanged at $1.41 per pound. Butter traded 2₵ lower on one trade at $2.10 per pound. Grade A nonfat dry milk was bid 2.25₵ higher to 84.5₵.
Wednesday afternoon the USDA released its February cold storage report. After seeing higher cow numbers and production on Monday’s production report, the results were as expected.
Cheese stocks rose 3% from January, and 6% from February 2016. Butter socks grew a whopping 28% from January, and 20% from a year ago. At 282.6 million pounds butter stocks have never been so high in February before.