The Class III price came in 7 cents short of $11 for April.

According to the USDA’s announcement of class prices on May 5, the Class III price fell 18 cents — to $10.93 for April. It also is $3.68 less than a year ago.

The Class II and IV prices both fell 32 cents — to $11.37 and $10.36, respectively. One year ago, the Class II and IV prices were $13.24 and $12.61, respectively.

Cheese prices have been holding their own. The block cheese price at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange settled unchanged at $1.16 per pound on May 4. Barrels also were unchanged at $1.1275.

The milk futures market continues to settle below $12. On May 4, the May through December 2006 Class III contact months all settled between $10.83 and $11.90. As of May 4, the 2006 Class III futures average was $11.54 per hundredweight.

Milk prices are expected to dip further, with some market analysts predicting May as the low price point for the year.

USDA; CME