February Cattle on Feed Report Recap


USDA released their monthly Cattle on Feed report Friday afternoon (Feb 24).  The report revealed that more cattle were on feed February 1, 2012 than the same time last year, while less cattle were placed on feed durring January 2012 than the same month in 2011.  In feedlots with capacities of 1,000 head or more, there were 11.811 million head of cattle, 2.1% above February 1, 2011.  This was mostly expected as the average of pre-report expectations had the number pegged at an increase of 2.5%.  The reported on feed value was rather close to the low end of estimates, so this could bode well for prices when markets open on Monday; however since it was within the range of estimates any positive move will be tempered. Continue reading “February Cattle on Feed Report Recap”

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Cattle Market Notes – Week of Feb 24, 2012


Cash Cattle:
Cash fed cattle trade came to screeching halt this week after last week’s strong advance. Bids and asks were about $6/cwt apart on Friday afternoon.  In Oklahoma City, feeder steers and heifers were $2-$5/cwt higher, steer calves were $4-$8/cwt lower, and heifer calves were $3-$10/cwt higher.  Feeder steers were $2-$10/cwt higher and heifers sold $2-$6/cwt higher in Mississippi markets. Mississippi cull cows were steady and bulls were $1-$3/cwt higher.
Continue reading “Cattle Market Notes – Week of Feb 24, 2012”

Livestock Price & Production Tables – Week of Feb 24, 2012


Mississippi Auction Markets
Weight Steers Heifers Slaughter Cows, Bulls, and Replacements
300-350 $220 $230 $185 $195 Boning (80-85% lean) $76 $90
350-400 $207 $220 $175 $185 Boning (high-yielding) $90 $95
400-450 $195 $210 $170 $180 Lean $76 $83
450-500 $195 $210 $160 $170 Bulls, YG 1-2, <1,500 lbs $90 $96
500-550 $180 $190 $150 $165 Bulls, YG 1-2, >1,500 lbs $96 $108
550-600 $161 $180 $150 $165
600-650 $152 $162 $141 $150 Sm/Mdm Cow-Calf Pairs $825 $1,200
650-700 $152 $162 $141 $150 Mdm/Lg Cow-Calf Pairs $1,000 $1,500
700-750 $145 $155 $139 $149 Sm/Mdm Replacements $700 $1,100
750-800 $145 $155 $139 $149 Mdm/Lg Replacements $900 $1,300
Volume (head): vs Last Week vs Last Year
under 600 lbs 33.7% -12.5%
over 600 lbs 9.7% -12.1%
Slaughter Cows 10.9% -37.4%
Rep. Females -18.3% -31.9%
Note: Steer and heifer prices are for medium and large frame, numbers 1-2.
Source: USDA Agricultural Marketing Service

Continue reading “Livestock Price & Production Tables – Week of Feb 24, 2012”

Absolute versus Relative Risk


The current market environment appears very opportunistic.  It seems that few weeks goes by without some record being broken with respect to prices.  As I travel around and gauge producer sentiment, many are optimistic about the future.  This goes against every intuition I’ve ever experienced, in that producers are typically pessimistic about the future.  Cattle output prices are strong and seem to be signaling expansion.  However, as Dr. Tonsor highlighted last week, a full-fledged beef herd expansion continues to be tempered.  First, cull cattle prices remain strong in a similar vein as calf prices.  This phenomenon is in competition with expansion signals.  Second, any expansion will come at a cost.  Whether heifers are developed on the farm or purchased, these replacement females are/will be costly.  These costs will have to be absorbed by the producer or financed by an outside source.  Third, with these record prices comes an increased level of market risk, which creates its own set of issues with respect to the high costs of expansion. Continue reading “Absolute versus Relative Risk”

Cattle Market Notes – Week of Feb 17, 2012


Cash Cattle:
Cash fed cattle trade picked up this week and prices improved substantially.  Cattle in the Texas Panhandle sold at $129/cwt, about $5 higher.  Kansas cattle were higher by the same amount at $128/cwt.  Live and dressed cattle in Nebraska traded at $127-$129/cwt and $203/cwt, respectively, up $4-$5 for live and $6 for dressed.  In Oklahoma City, feeder steers and heifers were $1-$2/cwt higher, steer calves were $4-$8/cwt lower, and heifer calves were steady.  Feeder steers and heifers sold $3-$7/cwt higher in Mississippi markets. Mississippi cull cows and bulls were $1-$3/cwt higher.

Continue reading “Cattle Market Notes – Week of Feb 17, 2012”

Livestock Price & Production Tables – Week of Feb 17, 2012


Mississippi Auction Markets
Weight Steers Heifers Slaughter Cows, Bulls, and Replacements
300-350 $210 $225 $180 $190 Boning (80-85% lean) $80 $90
350-400 $200 $210 $175 $180 Boning (high-yielding) $90 $95
400-450 $190 $200 $157 $175 Lean $72 $80
450-500 $180 $190 $157 $175 Bulls, YG 1-2, <1,500 lbs $77 $90
500-550 $170 $180 $146 $160 Bulls, YG 1-2, >1,500 lbs $95 $105
550-600 $162 $170 $146 $160
600-650 $150 $160 $140 $155 Sm/Mdm Cow-Calf Pairs $900 $1,200
650-700 $150 $160 $135 $140 Mdm/Lg Cow-Calf Pairs $1,100 $1,500
700-750 $140 $153 $125 $135 Sm/Mdm Replacements $650 $950
750-800 $140 $153 $125 $135 Mdm/Lg Replacements $925 $1,300
Volume (head): vs Last Week vs Last Year
under 600 lbs -1.1% -34.1%
over 600 lbs 5.9% -34.1%
Slaughter Cows 13.5% -34.1%
Rep. Females 30.4% -34.1%
Note: Steer and heifer prices are for medium and large frame, numbers 1-2.
Source: USDA Agricultural Marketing Service

Continue reading “Livestock Price & Production Tables – Week of Feb 17, 2012”

Livestock Price & Production Tables – Week of Feb 10, 2012


Mississippi Auction Markets
Weight Steers Heifers Slaughter Cows, Bulls, and Replacements
300-350 $200 $220 $175 $185 Boning (80-85% lean) $77 $85
350-400 $190 $200 $160 $175 Boning (high-yielding) $85 $92
400-450 $180 $195 $155 $171 Lean $70 $80
450-500 $175 $180 $155 $171 Bulls, YG 1-2, <1,500 lbs $85 $92
500-550 $175 $184 $142 $155 Bulls, YG 1-2, >1,500 lbs $91 $102
550-600 $162 $175 $142 $155
600-650 $155 $165 $135 $148 Sm/Mdm Cow-Calf Pairs $1,000 $1,400
650-700 $145 $155 $135 $148 Mdm/Lg Cow-Calf Pairs $1,000 $1,300
700-750 $137 $152 $126 $140 Sm/Mdm Replacements $800 $1,100
750-800 $137 $152 $126 $140 Mdm/Lg Replacements $900 $1,300
Volume: vs Last Week vs Last Year
<600 -19.0% 25.0%
>600 -21.7% 76.0%
Sltr Cows -15.7% -24.2%
Replace. -36.4% -29.6%
Note: Steer and heifer prices are for medium and large frame, numbers 1-2.
Source: USDA Agricultural Marketing Service

Continue reading “Livestock Price & Production Tables – Week of Feb 10, 2012”