Supply Keeps Pressure On Beef Markets

Beef production so far this year is up 3.6% on larger cattle slaughter and increased carcass weights, adding pressure to an already stressed beef market, said Derrell Peel, Oklahoma State University Extension livestock marketing specialist, in the Extension Service’s newsletter “Cow/Calf Corner.” Year-to-date cattle slaughter is up 3.8%, driven by increases in female slaughter, Peel … Read More

Fed Cattle Price Slide Not Over

Average fed slaughter cattle prices continue to work lower, and the bottom may not come until late September or early October, according to USDA data. The data, collected and disseminated by the USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service, show weekly Southern Plains fed steer prices last week were $112.33 per cwt on a live basis.  This was … Read More

Hog Prices Nearing Seasonal Top

Market hog prices are rising seasonally as slaughter declines, but prices also may be nearing a seasonal top as higher dressed weights produce more pork that will have a harder time finding export demand, according to an analysis in the “National Hog Farmer.” The story by University of Missouri Professor Emeritus, Ron Plain, said cash … Read More

Meat Supply Increase Largely From Production

Forecast increases in 2019 supplies of red meats, poultry eggs and milk will be driven largely by expected gains in production, particularly for beef, pork, broilers, turkey, eggs and milk, said the USDA’s Economic Research Service Monday in its monthly Livestock, Dairy and Poultry Outlook. Increased imports also are likely to be an important factor … Read More

Funds Renew Net Long Cattle Position

Managed money, or large commodity investment funds, renewed their search for a collective net long live cattle futures position during the week ended Tuesday, Commodity Futures Trading Commission data showed Friday. The CFTC’s weekly Commitments of Traders report Friday showed managed money with a net long live cattle futures position of 21,352 contracts on Tuesday, … Read More

Supply Crimps Beef Cutout

Increased availability of beef resulting from higher slaughter levels appears to be taking a toll on beef cutout values. The USDA World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates report Tuesday estimated total 2018 beef supply at 30.888 billion pounds, up from 2017’s 30.001 billion but not up to the 2019 estimate of 31.598 billion.  Most of … Read More

Higher Kansas Fed Cattle Weights Not Likely Soon 6-14-18 – If Kansas fed cattle followed the national trend in April’s carcass weights, their slaughter weights likely declined counter-seasonally through the month, according to USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service data and survey results from the Kansas State University Extension Service. Each month, the K-State Extension Service surveys representative feedlots across the state and sends the data to the Livestock Marketing Information Center in Denver, Col., to be compiled into graphs that are representative of the whole state’s activities for the previous month. The results are released during the first week of the next month. The latest Kansas survey data showed the final weight of fed steers declined seasonally in April where there is a low in the 2012-2016 average of fed cattle weights. WHAT THE SURVEY SHOWED The survey showed the average fed steer weight from Kansas feed yards in April was 1,356 pounds, down 10, or 0.73%, from March’s 1,366 pounds. The comparisons are shown in this LMIC graph. However, April’s Kansas fed steer live weights were 11 pounds, or 0.82%, above last year’s 1,345 pounds and 7.2 pounds, or 0.53%, above the previous five-year average of 1,348.8 pounds. The data show that Kansas fed steer live weights should climb beginning in May if they are following the average trend. But Kansas fed steer weights did not follow the average last year, and NASS data implies they didn’t this year either. THE NASS DATA Weekly national slaughter data from the USDA’s NASS show a decline in federally inspected steer carcass weights in May, implying that Kansas feedlot closeout weights also declined, counter-seasonally. The data show national weekly slaughter steer dressed weights in May continuing the spring decline. The first week in April, dressed steer weights averaged 872 pounds. From there, weekly average steer dressed weights fell to 846 pounds the third week of May, a decline of 26 pounds, or 2.98%. National fed steer carcass weights rose to 848 pounds the last week of May, so the bottom in kill weights may be in for the year. If it is, it seems to be at least two to three weeks overdue as average fed steer dressed weights tend to bottom in late April, although they didn’t turn upward until early May last year. KANSAS DAYS ON FEED STILL RISING The number of days it took for April’s fed cattle sales to reach market weight continued to rise. The data show that it took an average of 182 days on feed to reach market weight, up two, or 1.11%, from 180 in March. April’s days on feed also were up 16 days, or 9.64%, from April 2917’s 166-day average and up 17.4 days, or 10.6%, from the 2012-2026 average of 164.6 days. CATTLE, BEEF RECAP No fed cattle sold Wednesday on the Livestock Exchange Video Auction, versus sales two weeks previous at $110 per cwt. Limited cash trade was reported at $180 per cwt on a dressed basis, down $4 from last week. Cash cattle traded last week at $114 to mostly $115 per cwt on a live basis, up $3.50 to $4 from the previous week. The USDA choice cutout Wednesday was $1.02 per cwt at $223.90, while select was off $1.09 at $202.30. The choice/select spread widened to $21.60 from $21.53 with 107 loads of fabricated product sold into the spot market. The CME Feeder Cattle index for the seven days ended Tuesday, was $141.02 per cwt, up $0.07. This compares with Wednesday’s Aug settlement of $145.65, down $0.15. IN OUR OPINION –Managed money and other investors continue to fret about possible tariffs on agricultural exports and keep taking prices lower. Soybeans are being hit especially hard. Pork exports could be hit, too, but technical traders are giving this market life for now. –The US dollar failed to move up in trading Wednesday, even after the Federal Open Market Committee raised the fed funds rate 25 basis points. This could help exports to remain where they are for now, but traders are concerned about what might happen with the European Central Bank. Some analysts credit Wednesday’s US dollar inaction to the uncertainty about what the ECB might do. –The USDA’s Cattle on Feed and Cold Storage reports are scheduled for release on June 22. The Cold Storage report could be telling this time. Cattle slaughter has been high amid strong demand, which could keep the inflow of beef into freezers low. If this is what is shown, it means packers have booked beef orders ahead. But if frozen beef stocks rise, it means the beef market, as a whole, is not keep up with slaughter.

If Kansas fed cattle followed the national trend in April’s carcass weights, their slaughter weights likely declined counter-seasonally through the month, according to USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service data and survey results from the Kansas State University Extension Service. Each month, the K-State Extension Service surveys representative feedlots across the state and sends the data … Read More