The Cattle Range Home Page 
Weekly Market Summary 
For the week ending December 22, 2017

The Cattle Range Market Trendlines:

The cattle markets traded cautiously lower most of the week amidst concern about Friday's Cattle on Feed Report.  The report came in bearish with cattle on feed 8% higher than a year ago and November placements 14% higher, both at the high end of estimates. This report was unusual in that it was released early while the futures were still trading, and although they closed lower, they didn't collapse.  Not to be overlooked in the bearishness of the report is that November marketings were 3% higher and highest for November since the series began in 1996.

10 Day Market Trendline

Change from Previous Day: -0.51% 
Change from 10 Days Ago: -1.38% 
Change from 60 Days Ago: -2.44%

60 Day Market Trendline

The Trendlines are indicators of overall cattle/beef market strength and are based on daily market factors.  Each daily factor is the aggregate weighted total of the Gain/(Loss) for 12 market indicators compared to the previous trading day. 

Weekly Market Overview:


On-Line Store

National Feeder & Stocker Cattle Weekly Summary:

RECEIPTS:  Auctions     Direct      Video/Internet    Total 
This Week     133,600     22,200         1,200         157,000 
Last Week     243,800     23,400        16,900         284,100 
Last Year         75,300     22,200        19,500         117,000
Compared to last week, steer and heifer calves and yearlings sold 2.00 on each side of steady.  There was a great deal of optimism in the cattle complex as the week started.  With the holidays upon us, this week represented the last marketing opportunity in 2017.  Very few auctions will hold sales next week as buyers, feedyards, and auction market personnel need a break after the last few weeks of hard running at auctions.  On Monday at Joplin Regional Stockyards, a string of 272 head of 901 lb yearling steers sold for 155.25.  On Thursday, Valentine Livestock Auction in Valentine, NE sold a package of 511 lb thin fleshed steers at 205.50 as well a load of 711 lb steers at 175.00. 


Fed cattle traded higher last week and boxed beef hung in there as we moved through the month of December.  This week's Choice Boxed Beef closed at 199.56, 2.31 lower than last week.  This week's cutout values also marked the first time Choice has closed below 200.00 since October 23, 2017.  Feeder cattle futures are now trading at early September levels and around 20.00/cwt lower than their contract highs.  The front five Feeder Cattle futures contracts were from 5.10 to 6.40 lower for the week and Live Cattle futures were mostly 2.45 to 3.57 lower, with the outlier being the December contract which is thinly traded now; 0.92 higher for the week.  The cash-futures relationship almost has to stay narrow as December only has four more trading days for traders to offset their position before contract expiration. 


December 1 cattle on Feed was released at 11 AM this morning with about an hour worth of trading yet to happen before the CME closed for the holiday.  Cattle on feed was reported at 108 percent of a year ago; Placements - 114 percent; Marketings 103 percent.  The Marketing total of 1.84 million head is the highest for November since the series began in 1996.  With less wheat pasture available to graze this year, many cattle have made their way or are going to make their way to feedyards in pretty short order.   On the Cold Storage report released this morning, total red meat supplies in freezers were down 10 percent from the previous month and down 4 percent from last year. Total pounds of beef in freezers were down 4 percent from the previous month and down 8 percent from last year. 


Here's to having a Standing Rib Roast on the dinner table on Sunday or Monday.  Frozen pork supplies were down 16 percent from the previous month and down 3 percent from last year. On behalf of the Livestock, Poultry and Grain Market News, we would like to wish safe and happy holiday season.  Auction volume this week included 43 percent weighing over 600 lbs and 41 percent heifers.


Stocker Steers:

 Feeder Steers:

Stocker & Feeder Cattle Weekly Receipts: 

Weekly sales of Stocker Calves & Feeder Cattle sold via auctions, direct country sales, and video/Internet sales as reported by the UDSA Market News


Five Year Moving Average - Stocker, Feeder, & Slaughter Steers:


Cattle Futures Summary: Live cattle futures finished the Friday session with most contracts 20 cents to $1.30 lower, with nearby Dec staying even with cash, up 20 cents. Feeder cattle futures were down $1 to $1.85 on the day. The CME feeder cattle index on December 21 was down $1.92 to $149.92. Wholesale boxed beef values were higher on Friday afternoon. Choice was up $1.44 at $199.56, with select $1.01 higher at $187.88. Estimated weekly FI cattle slaughter through Saturday is 612,000 head, 18,000 head fewer than the previous week but 43,000 head larger than the same week last year. The Cattle on Feed report indicated a large number of placements during November at 13.89% above last year. Marketings came in at just 3.19% above a year ago, as December 1 cattle on feed were 8.11% above Dec 2016 at 11.516 million head. Stocks of beef in cold storage at the end of November came in at 486.954 million pounds, down 8.3% from a year ago and 3.96% lower than October, which is against the seasonal tendency to build. 


Mexican Feeder Cattle Weekly Import Summary

Receipts EST: 25,000     Week ago Act: 36,918     Year ago Act: 22,432
Compared to last week steer calves and yearlings steady to 3.00 lower. Heifers steady to 5.00 lower. Trade moderate to active, demand moderate to good. Supply consisted of steers and spayed heifers weighing 300-600 lbs. 
Feeder steers: Medium and large 1&2, 300-400 lbs 165.00-180.00; 400-500 lbs 145.00-160.00; 500-600 lbs 130.00-145.00; Medium and large 2&3, 300-400 lbs 150.00-165.00; 400-500 lbs 130.00-145.00; 500-600 lbs 115.00-130.00.
Feeder heifers: Medium and large 1&2, 300-400 lbs 140.00-152.00; 400-500 lbs 130.00-142.00; 500-600 lbs 120.00-132.00. 

Selected Auction Reports: 

"Click" on individual auction links for complete report
Green Forest Livestock Auction - Green Forest AR 
Receipts:  434    Last Week:  537    Year Ago:  0 
Compared to one week earlier, slaughter cows 3.00 to 5.00 lower, slaughter bulls 10.00 higher, feeder bulls, feeder heifers, feeder steers lightly tested, bull calves 2.00 to 4.00 higher, 


Tulia Livestock Auction - Tulia TX 
Receipts:  1773    Last Week:  2104    Year Ago:  923 
Compared to last week:  Yearlings steers and heifers sold 4.00 to 7.00 lower.  Stocker calves and heifers sold steady on a light test.  The area is bracing for much colder temperatures across the panhandle but still in need of moisture. 


Pratt Livestock Feeder Cattle Auction - Pratt, KS 
Receipts:  1951    Last Week:  1529    Year Ago:  1452 
Compared to last week: Feeder steers 650-1000 lbs steady to 6.00 lower on a light supply. Feeder heifers 750-1000 lbs 1.00-2.00 lower on an extremely light test of Medium and Large 1.


Clovis Livestock Auction - Clovis NM 
Receipts:  1891          Week Ago:  2693       Year Ago:  1463 
Compared to last week:  Feeder steers under 500 lbs 6.00 higher; 500-600 lbs 1.00 higher.  600-700 lb calves 1.00 lower; no comparison over 700 lbs.  Heifers mostly 2.00-500 lower.  Slaughter cows steady to 2.00 higher.


Farmers & Ranchers Livestock Commission Co. - Salina KS 
Receipts:  2581    Last Week:  2998    Year Ago:  4011 
Compared to last week: Last sale of 2017 before the Holiday Break. Steers 800-950 lbs steady to 5.00 higher; 800 lbs and under 1.00-2.00 higher in a limited supply. Heifers 450-950 lbs 1.00-5.00 lower in an extreme limited supply.


Oklahoma National Stockyards - Oklahoma City, OK 
Receipts           Week Ago             Year Ago 
 5,947                 7,129                     3,130 
Compared to last week:   Feeder steers and heifers traded unevenly steady.  Lightweight steer calves mostly steady to 1.00 lower, 500-600 lbs. 1.00-3.00 higher with all heifer calves bringing steady to 3.00 lower. Demand moderate, good for heavier weaned steer calves.


Huss Platte Valley Auction - Kearney NE 
Receipts:  4917    Last Week:  5440    Year Ago:  3278 
Compared to last week steers and heifers sold unevenly steady. Demand was moderate to good for this week’s offering of mostly longtime weaned calves. Some offerings displayed a tick more flesh than last week’s offerings.


Cullman Stockyard - Cullman AL 
Receipts:  376    Last Week:  798    Last Year:  000 
Compared to last week: Slaughter cows sold steady, slaughter bulls sold steady. Feeder bulls and steers sold steady to 2.00 higher. Feeder heifers sold 1.00 to 2.00 higher. Replacement cows and pairs sold mostly steady.


Toppenish, WA Livestock Auction - Toppenish WA 
Receipts:  1675    Last Week:  1960    Year Ago:  1000 
Compared to last Thursday at the same sale, stocker and feeder cattle steady to weak in pre-holiday trading. Trade active with good demand for all classes. Slaughter cows and bulls steady to 3.00 lower. Trade active with moderate  
preholiday demand.


Valentine Livestock Auction Market - Valentine NE 
Receipts:  3505    Two Weeks Ago: 4860   Last year: 0 
Compared with two weeks ago steers and heifers traded unevenly steady.  Demand was good, colder weather in the area with snow. The feeder supply included 56 percent steers, and 44 percent heifers.

Direct Sales of Feeder & Stocker Cattle:.

WY, Western NE & Western Dakotas Direct Feeder Cattle Wtd Avg (Fri) 
Receipts: 132     Week Ago: 378    Year Ago: 1,165 
Not enough comparable offerings for a market comparison.  Demand was light this week for direct feeder cattle as many contacts continue to report their customers’ pens space in very limited.


AZ-CA-NV Weekly Feeder Cattle Review (Fri) 
Confirmed 0 
Compared to last week, trade inactive, demand light.  Trade should de-velop late next week or after the 1st of the year.  Cattle weighing over 600 lbs totaled 0 percent.  Heifers totaled 0 percent.


IA-South MN Direct Feeder Cattle Weekly (Mon) 
Receipts:  118    Last week: 0     Last Year:  150 
Compared to the last report:  Feeder steers and heifers not  tested.  Prices based on net weights FOB after a 3 percent shrink or equivalent and 5-10 cent slide on calves and 4-6 cent slide on  yearlings from base weights. 


Eastern Cornbelt Direct Feeder Cattle Summary (Fri) 
This week: 1,296      Last week: 1,910      Last Year: 0 
Compared to last week:  No current FOB delivered cattle for an accurate market test.  Supply included 100 percent over 600 lbs; 77 percent heifers.  Prices based on net weights FOB after a 3 percent shrink or equivalent and 5-10 cent slide on calves and 4-6 cent slide on yearlings from base weights. 


Colorado Direct Feeder Cattle Report (Fri) 
Receipts: 145          Last Week 1,759        Last Year: Holiday  
Compared to last week:  No current FOB trades this week.Demand moderate.  Supply consisted of 100 percent over 600 lbs; 49 percent heifers.  Unless otherwise stated prices are FOB with a 2-3 percent shrink or equivalent and with a 8-12 cent slide on calves and 4-8 cent slide on yearlings from base weight.


Kansas Direct Feeder Cattle Summary (Fri) 
Receipts:  533    Last Week:  1692    Year Ago:  0000 
Compared with last week: not enough steers and no heifer sales confirmed for a market test. Most buyers and sellers have chosen to wait for 2018 to trade cattle and enjoy the Christmas Holiday season.


Montana Direct Feeder Cattle Wtd Avg (Fri) 
Receipts: 0          Last week: 0       Last Year: 0  
Compared to last week:  No comparable receipts for feeder Steers and heifers.  Supply includes 0 percent over 600 lbs and 0 percent heifers. Unless otherwise stated prices are FOB weigh point with a 2-3 percent shrink or equivalent and with a 8-12 cent slide on calves and 4-8 cent slide on yearlings from base weights.


New Mexico Feeder Cattle Report (Mon) 
Receipts:  400    Last Week:  59    Year Ago:  500 
Compared to last week:  Not enough comparable sales of steers or heifers for an adequate market trend.  Trade activity was light to moderate on moderate demand.  Supply consisted of 67 percent steers and 33 percent heifers.


Northwest Wtd Avg Direct Feeder Cattle Report (Fri) 
Receipts:  268    Last Week:  0    Year Ago:  4050 
Compared to last week:  Feeder steers and heifers not well tested. Demand moderate.  The feeder supply included 100 percent over 600 lbs and 01 percent heifers.


Oklahoma Direct Feeder Cattle (Fri) 
Receipts: 4,066        Last Week 1,285        Last Year  
Compared to last week:  No trend available for an accurate market trend for feeder steers and heifers due to limited receipts. Receipts this week consisted of 100 percent over 600 lbs and 75 percent heifers.


Texas Direct Feeder Cattle (Fri) 
Receipts:  14,800    Last Week:  13,150    Year Ago:  16,500 
Compared to last week:  Current FOB sales of steers and heifers sold unevenly steady for the week as the CME feeder cattle contacts were up and down.  Trade activity and demand were moderate to good. Supply consisted of 47 percent steers and 53 percent heifers. 

Representative Sales of Cows & Pairs:

Reported by USDA Market News for the week ending December 22nd
  • McAlester, OK:
    • Replacement Cows:  Medium and Large 1-2  1-6 yr old 900-1225 lb cow 4-8 months bred 810.00-1100.00; 5-10+ yr old 925-1450 lb cow 4-8 months bred 800.00-1025.00 per head. 
    • Pairs:  Medium and Large 1-2  5-10+ yr old 1075-1325 lb cow w/100-400 lb calf 900.00-1450.00 per pair. 
  • Oklahoma City, OK:
    • Replacement Cows:  Medium and Large 1-2  1-6 yr old 800-1475 lb cow 3-7 months bred 700.00-1185.00; 3-6 yr old 1150.00-1575 lb cow 6-7 months bred 1235.00-1325.00; 7-10 yr old 1125.00-1575.00 lb cow 4-7 months bred 700.00-935.00 per head. 
    • Pairs:  Medium and Large 1-2  5-6 yr old 1100-1675 lb cow w/75-150 lb calf 1125.00-1360.00; 6-8 yr old 1000-1250 lb cow w/75-100 lb calf 950.00-1075.00.
  • Woodward, OK:
    • Replacement Cows:  Medium and Large 1-2  4-6 yr old 1400-1600 lb black cow 7-8 months bred 1410.00-1500.00; 5-10 yr old 1200-1400 lb cow, some black, 1000.00-1225.00; 7-10+ yrs old 11550-1375 lb cow, some black, 4-7 months bred 800.00-950.00; 10+ yrs old 1175-1275 lb cow, some black, 4-5 months bred 700.00-825.00 per head. 
    • Pairs:  Medium and Large 1-2  4-9 yr old 1100-1350 lb black cow w/150-300 lb calf 1325.00-1625.00 per pair.
  • Clovis, NM:
    • Replacement Cows:  Medium and Large 1-2 Young to long solid mouth 910-1420 lb cows 3-8 months bred 800.00-1775.00, per head; middle aged short solid mouth 865-1275 lb cows 3-8 months bred 725.00-1025.00, per head, aged 858-1340 lb cows 3-8 months bed 600.00-925.00, per head.  First Calf Heifers:  830-885 lb cows 3-8 months bred 725.00-825.00, per head. 
    • Cow/Calf Pairs:  Medium and Large 1-2 Young to long solid mouth 950-1500 lb cows w/125-300 lb calves 1200.00-2085.00, per pair; middle aged short solid mouth 950-1100 lb cows w/250-300 lb calves 1150.00-1300.00, per pair; aged 1150-1320 lb cows w/250-300 lb calves 1025.00-1300.00, per pair.  First Calf Heifers:  775-1000 lb cows w/150-300 lb calves 1150.00-1460.00, per pair.
  • Roswell, NM:
    • Replacement Cows: Medium and Large 1-2: Young 915-1025 lb cows 1-8 months bred 800.00-1075.00, per head; middle aged 825-1395 lb cows 3-8 months bred 675.00-975.00, per head; aged 830-1268 lb cows 3-8 months bred 550.00-800.00, per head. 
    • Cow/Calf Pairs:  Medium and Large 1-2:  Middle aged indiv 1350 lb cow w/250 lb calf 1175.00, per pair; aged 800-1070 lb cow w/100-225 lb calves 825.00-900.00, per pair.
  • Dodge City, KS:
    • Bred Cows: Short solid to broken mouth bred 2nd trimester Medium and Large 1-2  84 head 1321-1392 lbs 850.00-875.00 (858.86).  Medium and Large 2-3  7 head 1180 lbs 800.00; 25 head 1238-1322 lbs 775.00-8000.00 (782.34). Medium and Large 3  5 head 1122 lbs 675.00 all per head. 
    • Cow/calf pairs solid mouth Medium and Large 1-2 7 head 1305 lbs with 150-200 lb calves 1275.00 per pair.
  • Salina, KS:
    • Bred Cows: First Calf Heifers Medium and Large 1  980-1260 lb cows 1-6 months bred 1500.00-1785.00.  Medium and Large 1-2  920-1295 lb cows 3-9 months bred 1260.00-1475.00.  Medium and Large 1 Middle-Aged 1100-1295 lb cows 3-9 months bred 1510.00-1825.00.  Medium and Large 1-2 1090-1195 lb cows 3-9 months bred 1185.00-1475.00; 1200-1290 lb cows 3-9 months bred 1060.00-1475.00.  Medium and Large 1-2 Aged 1175-1290 lb cows 3-9 months bred 750.00-985.00 all per head. 
    • Cow/Calf Pairs: Medium and Large 1 Young pkg 950 lb cow w/150-200 lb calf 1775.00.  Middle-Aged pkg 1280 lb cow w/200-275 lb calf 1975.00.  Medium and Large 1-2 Middle-Aged 1100-1285 lb cow w/150-275 lb calf 1410.00-1650.00.  Medium and Large 1-2 Aged pkg 1240 lb cow w/200-275 lb calf 1235.00 all per pair.
  • Bowling Green, MO:
    • Bred Cows:  Medium and Large 1-2  3-6 yrs  few 1150-1520 lbs 2nd-3rd stage 1400.00-1525.00; few short solid 1250-1350 lbs 2nd-3rd stage 900.00-1000.00.  Medium and Large 2  3-6 yrs 1000-1475 lbs 2nd-3rd stage 1125.00-1350.00; thin 1000-1300 lbs 2nd-3rd stage 750.00-1000.00; short solid to aged cows 1200-1400 lbs 2nd stage 660.00-840.00. 
    • Cow/Calf Pairs:  Medium and Large 2  4-7 yrs 1000-1450 lbs w/baby to 250 lb calves 1275.00-1460.00; short solid to aged cows 1100-1300 lbs w/150-200 lb calves 1000.00-1125.00.  Medium 2  5-6 yrs 900-950 lbs w/150 lb calves 1100.00-1210.00.
  • Joplin, MO:
    • Bred Cows:  Medium and Large 1-2  2-7 yrs. old 975-1370 lbs 3rd stage 985.00-1300.00; short solid mouth to aged cows 1220-1540 lbs 975.00-1275.00; 2-7 yrs 985–1230 lbs 2nd stage bred 985.00-1150.00; 985-1125 lbs. 1st stage 985.00-1025.00; short and solid mouth to aged 1075-1365 lbs 648.00-1075.00; 1st bred 2 yrs – aged cows 1035-1335 lbs 645.00-735.00 a package of 800 lb Charolaise cross 18 month old heifers 775.00. Medium and Large 2 ; 3 yrs to short solid mouth cows 2nd and 3rd stage bred 1300-1490 lbs cows 750.00–985.00 per head. 
    • Cow-Calf Pairs:  Few Medium and Large 1-2:  2- 7yrs 885-1450 lbs. cows with 150-350 lbs. calves 800.00-1575.00 per pair.
  • Springfield, MO:
    • Bred Cows:  Medium and Large 1-2  3-6 yrs 2nd and 3rd stage 1305-1320 lbs 1075.00-1175.00, 1st stage 920-1260 lbs 975.00-985.00; short and solid mouth to aged 2nd and 3rd stage 1110-1325 lbs 675.00-1050.00. Large 1-2  4-5 yrs 2nd and 3rd stage few 1440-1465 lbs 900.00-1100.00; short and solid mouth to aged 2nd stage 1390-1485 lbs 680.00-750.00. Medium 1-2  2-7 yrs 2nd and 3rd stage 890-1025 lbs 825.00-950.00; short and solid mouth to aged 2nd and 3rd stage 965-1060 lbs 600.00-700.00 per head. 
    • Cow/Calf Pairs:  Medium and Large 1-2  4 yrs to short and solid mouth 1155-1350 lb cows w/285-390 lb calves 1300.00-1435.00. Large 2  7 yr 1410 lb cow w/350 lb calf 1150.00. Medium and Large 2  broken mouth 1055 lb cow w/175 lb calf 750.00. Medium 1-2  2 yr 810 lb cow w/300 lb calf and rebred 1200.00 per pair.
  • St. Joseph, MO:
    • Bred Cows: Medium and Large 1 (Per Head / Actual Wt) 2-4 years old 1303 lbs 3-6 months bred 1400.00; 2-4 years old 1243 lbs 4-9 months bred 1250.00; 2-4 years old 1384-1560 lbs 6-9 months bred 1560.00-1600.00; few fancy 2000.00; 5-8 years old 1250-1716 lbs 3-6 months bred 1400.00-1725.00; 5-8 years old 1328 lbs 4-9 months bred 1400.00; few fancy 1925.00; >5 years old 1397 lbs 3-6 months bred 1225.00; >5 years old 1314-1545 lbs 4-9 months bred 1425.00-1500.00; >5 years old 1592 lbs 6-9 months bred 1510.00.  Medium and Large 1-2 2-4 years old 993-1153 lbs 3-6 months bred 1000.00-1100.00; 2-4 years old 1030-1045 lbs 6-9 months bred 1125.00-1150.00; 5-8 years old 1349-1410 lbs 3-6 months bred 1060.00-1300.00; >5 years old 1268-1610 lbs 3-6 months bred 900.00-1160.00; >5 years old 1320-1350 lbs 4-9 months bred 1150.00-1170.00; >5 years old 1226 lbs 6-9 months bred 1125.00. 
    • Cow-Calf Pairs:  Medium and Large 1 2-4 years old 1350 lb cow w/ 150-300 lbs calf 1485.00; 5-8 years old 1300 lb cow w/150-300 lbs calf 1610.00; >8 years old 1300 lb cow w/ 150-300 lbs calf 1225.00; 5-8 years old 1200-1300 lb cow w/ >300 lbs calf 1510.00-1600.00; >8 years old 1125-1300 lb cow w/ >300 lbs calf 1025.00-1240.00.  Medium and Large 1-2 5-8 years old 1200 lb cow w/ 150-300 lbs calf 1075.00.
  • West Plains, MO:
    • Bred Cows:  Medium and Large 1-2  2-6 yr old 890-1740 lb cows in the 2nd-3rd stage 1000.00-1350.00 per head; 1st stage 950.00-1050.00. Seven yrs to broken mouth 1075-1350 lb cows in the 2nd-3rd stage 900.00-1100.00 per head.  Medium and Large 2  2-7 yr old 628-1310 lb cows in the 1st-3rd stage 750.00-1075.00 per head; Short-solid to broken mouth 1045-1330 lb cows in the 2nd-3rd stage 600.00-800.00 per head. Medium 2  4-7 yr old 795-980 lb cows in the 2nd-3rd stage 550.00-700.00 per head. 
    • Cow-Calf Pairs:  Medium and Large 1-2  3-6 yr old 1158-1360 lb cows with 150-200 lb calves 1200.00-1350.00 per pair; 3-n-1 Pkg 5 yr old 1382 lb cows in 1st-2nd stage with 300-400 lb calves 1575.00 per pair.  Short-solid to broken mouth 1038-1470 lb cows with 100-250 lb calves 1000.00-1200.00 per pair.  Medium and Large 2  2-6 yr old 670-1175 lb cows with 125-250 lb calves 1050.00-1200.00 per pair; 7 yr to broken mouth 815-1225 lb cows with 100-300 lb calves 800.00-1000.00 per pair.
  • Burwell, NE:
    • Bred Cows:  Medium and Large 1-2 “AI” bred heifers in 2nd and 3rd stage 958-983 lbs 1775.00.  Young: 2nd and 3rd stage 1181- lbs 1550.00; 1200-1260 lbs 1250.00; 1505 lbs 1125.00 Solid Mouth 2nd and 3rd stage 1111-1171 lbs 735.00-1025.00; 1203-1291 lbs 710.00-1150.00; 1305-1380 lbs 910.00-960.00; 1415-1456 lbs 950.00-1300.00;1655 lbs 935.00. 1st stage 1058-1248 lbs 750.00-1250.00. Short Solid Mouth 2nd and 3rd stage 1077 lbs 750.00; 1216-1286 lbs 860.00-900.00; 1327-1386 lbs 810.00-960.00; 1400-1488 lbs 960.00-1025.00; 1508-1585 lbs 910.00-1075.00. Broken Mouth 2nd and 3rd stage 968 lbs 910.00;1222-1283 lbs 785.00-910.00; 1334-1395 lbs 900.00-1050.00; 1413-1486 lbs 925.00-1000.00; 1503-1587 lbs 935.00-1075.00; 1st stage 1236 lbs 700.00.
  • Riverton, WY:
    • Bred Cows: Heifers 1080-1115 lbs mostly 1450.00-1475.00, package 892 lbs 1325.00; Young 1050-1310 lbs mostly 1400.00-1560.00, several 830-1460 lbs 1150.00-1335.00, few 900.00-960.00; Middle Aged (Short Solids) 1115-1380 lbs mostly 1175.00-1225.00, few 775.00-960.00; Aged (Short Term) 1220-1285 lbs 810.00-850.00 all per head.
  • Arkansas:
    • Replacement Cows: Medium and Large 1-2  2-7 year old 850-1250 lbs 2nd-3rd stage 90.00-135.00; 7-10 yr 2nd-3rd stage 47.00-90.00. 
    • Cow-Calf Pairs:  Medium and Large 1-2  3-10 yr old 800-1200 lb cow w/100-200 lb calf 1000.00-1270.00; w/200-300 lb calf 1325.00-1600.00 per pair. 

Canadian Cattle:

Alberta Beef Producers: Alberta direct cattle sales Thursday saw light trade develop with bids a touch stronger from Wednesday to Thursday. Dressed sales have been reported from $265.00-270.00 delivered while live sales have been reported in the low to mid $160.00's.  One packer was still buying cattle for next week's delivery.  Fed prices are on track to close above $160.00 this week, the highest price since early June. Both cash to futures and Alberta/Nebraska cash to cash basis levels strengthened this week, which encouraged producers to market cattle.


Canadian Cattle Prices: 
Prices have been converted to U.S. $/CWT. Grades changed to approximate U.S. equivalents 
Exchange Rate: Canadian dollar equivalent to $0.7804 U.S. dollars


Prices for the week ending December 15th: 

The "Nord Fork" 
Replaces Flankers at Branding

December Cattle on Feed Report

As of December 1st, United States Cattle on Feed Up 8 Percent
  • Cattle and calves on feed for the slaughter market in the United States for feedlots with capacity of 1,000 or more head totaled 11.5 million head on December 1, 2017. The inventory was 8 percent above December 1, 2016.
  • Placements in feedlots during November totaled 2.10 million head, 14 percent above 2016. Net placements were 2.03 million head. 
    • During November, placements of cattle and calves weighing less than 600 pounds were 610,000 head, 600-699 pounds were 545,000 head, 700-799 pounds were 455,000 head, 800-899 pounds were 294,000 head, 900-999 pounds were 75,000 head, and 1,000 pounds and greater were 120,000 head.
  • Marketings of fed cattle during November totaled 1.84 million head, 3 percent above 2016. Marketings were the highest for November since the series began in 1996.
  • Other disappearance totaled 71,000 head during November, 3 percent above 2016.
  • Complete December Cattle On Feed Report

Cattle on Feed Inventory in 1,000+ Capacity Feedlots as of December 1st 
Millions of Head


Number of Cattle Placed on Feed in 1,000+ Capacity Feedlots in November  
Millions of Head

Number of Cattle Marketed from 1,000+ Capacity Feedlots in November  
Millions of Head

Cattle on Feed by State as of December 1st

Beef Consumption & Beef Demand  

Derrell S. Peel, Oklahoma State University Livestock Marketing Specialist
U.S. domestic beef consumption is projected to be 56.6 pounds per capita for 2017, up from 55.4 pounds in 2016 (retail weight). That is a 2.2 percent year-over-year increase. Beef consumption is higher because beef production is increasing; in fact, it is projected to be up 3.8 percent year over year from 2016.


Domestic consumption is up less, in percentage terms, than beef production for a couple of reasons. First, growth in beef exports in 2017, projected to be up 12-13 percent over 2016, moves some of the additional production off-shore. That, along with minor adjustments in ending stocks, will result in a total domestic supply (disappearance) that is up roughly 2.8 percent year over year. Finally, though U.S. population grows slowly, it does still grow, so per capita consumption will increase even more slowly when the total domestic supply is spread across a larger U.S. population.


Per capita beef consumption bottomed recently in 2015 at 54 pounds, so the 2017 level represents a 2.6 pounds per capita increase in beef consumption the past two years. Beef production and consumption are projected to increase again in 2018, with a forecast increase in beef production of 4.5 percent resulting in per capita consumption of 57.8 pounds, a 2.1 percent additional increase in per capita beef consumption.


Increased beef consumption does not, by itself, indicate anything about beef demand. We are consuming more beef because we are producing more beef. The question of beef demand hinges on the question of “at what price will consumers eat this additional beef?” In general, we expect that increasing supplies will result in lower prices but how much lower is the key.


Demand has been a pleasant surprise in 2017. Retail beef prices are currently higher than last year despite the increase in beef supplies in 2017. Beef demand is all the more impressive given that total meat supplies are higher year over year, not only the result of more beef, but also increased pork and poultry production. November retail Choice beef prices were $5.81 per pound, up from 5.76 per pound in October and above that same level of $5.76 per pound one year ago. The all-fresh retail beef price was $5.64 per pound in November, up from $5.62 per pound in October and above the November 2016 price of $5.59 pound. The ratio of retail beef prices relative to pork and poultry remains very strong, holding near to record levels achieved during the record high prices in 2015. The calculated beef demand index, which accounts for pork and poultry impacts as well as increased beef production, showed a slight increase for the third quarter of 2017.


Retail beef prices are expected to decrease in 2018 given additional beef supplies. This will put additional pressure on wholesale beef prices as well as fed and feeder cattle prices. However, if demand continues strong, the retail price pressure may be rather modest with less negative impact on wholesale beef and cattle markets. Strong demand will depend on a continuation of generally strong macroeconomic conditions including decreased unemployment and income growth. Any change in overall macroeconomic conditions is a threat and factors to watch include rising interest rates and inflationary pressures. Shocks external to the beef industry, for example, a sudden jump in gasoline prices, could sharply impact consumer spending and beef demand.


Continued improvement in beef trade will also be a crucial factor to minimizing price pressure in 2018. Continued strong exports to current major beef destinations including Japan, South Korea, Mexico, Canada and Hong Kong will be essential. New export growth to China is likely to remain a small market in 2018 but holds significant potential over time.

USDA National Retail Beef Report: 

Advertised Prices for Beef at Major Retail Supermarket Outlets



This week in beef retail, the Feature Rate decreased by 1.4 percent, Special Rate was .5 percent lower, and the Activity Index posted a 4.9 percent decrease. Bone-In Ribeye Roasts and Tenderloins remain the major feature beef items on retail ads this week. Beef continues its seasonal surge in preparation for fast approaching holidays. Rib and Loin cuts saw the most ad space, while Chuck, Round, Brisket, and Ground Beef items saw less. Cattle slaughter under federal inspection saw a 2.9 percent decrease in repsonse to the upcoming holidays

December Cold Storage Report

As of November 30, 2017...
Total red meat supplies in freezers were down 10% from the previous month and down 4% from last year.
  • Total pounds of beef in freezers were down 4 percent from the previous month and down 8 percent from last year. 
  • Frozen pork supplies were down 16 percent from the previous month and down 3 percent from last year.
  • Stocks of pork bellies were up 12 percent from last month and up 94 percent from last year.
  • Total frozen poultry supplies on November 30, 2017 were down 11 percent from the previous month but up 15 percent from a year ago. 
    • Total stocks of chicken were up 3 percent from the previous month and up 13 percent from last year.
    • Total pounds of turkey in freezers were down 37 percent from last month but up 22 percent from November 30, 2016.

Photo of the Week:

China Dangles Carrots at U.S. Beef Industry

Steve Kay -- Cattle Buyers Weekly
China is getting increasingly adept at dangling carrots to keep the U.S. at bay. Its latest carrot was to announce on November 9 that it had signed US$253 billion of business deals with U.S. companies. News reports quickly questioned whether the deals will turn into actual business. Buried in the massive total was news that, China’s second largest retailer and e-commerce company, had signed agreements to purchase US$200 million of Montana beef over the next three years. Skepticism also greeted this news, for reasons that have bedeviled the re-entry of Canadian and U.S. beef into China.


China reopened its market to U.S. beef last June. But only a trickle (800 metric tonnes by the end of October) has been shipped. That’s because few U.S. cattle satisfy China’s requirements that the beef comes from cattle that have not been implanted or fed ractopamine (the feed supplement Optaflexx). The same requirements will make it difficult for Montana to supply the amount of beef JD wants. JD also says it intends to invest up to US$100 million to build a new processing facility in Montana to support Montana beef production, another deal that industry analysts greeted with skepticism.


JD says it will purchase beef from the Montana Stock Growers Association (MSGA), Cross Four Ranch and other MSGA members. The agreement contains commitments to import an increasing amount of beef over the three-year term. This will increase Montana beef export sales by as much as 40 per cent in 2018, says MSGA. The agreement calls for JD to purchase the equivalent of US$50 million of cattle in 2018, US$70 million in 2019 and US$80 million in 2020.


My calculations suggest this would involve 28,000 steers or 31,500 heifers in 2018, just over 39,000 steers or 44,000 heifers in 2019, and nearly 45,000 steers or 50,300 heifers in 2020. Yet there are not enough cattle in Montana currently that satisfy China’s “natural” requirements to fill the amount of beef that JD says it will buy in 2018. Even if more Montana producers and cattle feeders were persuaded to change their production practices, it would take two or three years to build up numbers of eligible cattle.


Producers would also have to enter into special feeding arrangements with feedlots. Montana is a sizeable cow-calf state but has little feeding capacity. Its cattle total on January 1 this year was 2.650 million head. Beef cows totaled 1.486 million head and its 2016 calf crop totaled 1.470 million head. Nearly all calves and feeder cattle go out of state to be finished. Montana had only 45,000 head on feed on January 1 this year.


Producers and feedlots will only produce beef that qualifies for China if they are guaranteed premiums to cover the additional cost of production due to slower growth rates in cattle on feed. JD says it will buy the beef at fair market value. But what does that mean? The agreement also makes no mention of what percentage of the carcass JD will buy. Buying only a certain number of items won’t work economically for producers.


The likelihood of a new processing plant appears to be even more remote. It might take two or three years for a plant to be approved let alone built, say analysts. Various attempts have been made in the past 25 years to build a plant in Montana but to no avail. If one was eventually built, the only way it could survive is for Montana to increase its feeding capacity. JD’s agreement will remain a carrot until Montana starts producing meaningful amounts of beef for China. 

U.S. Dollar - 6 Month Chart:

Over the last 5 years, an average of around 10% of U.S. beef production has been exported, making exports an extremely important factor affecting beef and cattle prices.  A strong dollar depresses export demand. 

Choice Boxed Beef Cutout, Slaughter, & Feeder Steers:

Boxed beef cutout values higher on moderate demand and light offerings. Select and Choice rib, chuck, round, and loin cuts steady to firm. Beef trimmings unevenly steady on light demand and offerings.


The average value of hide and offal for the five days ending Fri, Dec 22, 2017 was estimated at 10.58 per cwt., down 0.06 from last week and down 1.20 from last year.

December USDA Livestock Slaughter Report

Record High Total Red Meat, Beef and Pork Production in November
Commercial red meat production for the United States totaled 4.55 billion pounds in November, up 1 percent from the 4.50 billion pounds produced in November 2016.
  • Beef production, at 2.29 billion pounds, was 2 percent above the previous year. Cattle slaughter totaled 2.76 million head, up 3 percent from November 2016. The average live weight was down 11 pounds from the previous year, at 1,373 pounds.
  • Veal production totaled 6.4 million pounds, 4 percent below November a year ago. Calf slaughter totaled 42,400 head, down 10 percent from November 2016. The average live weight was up 17 pounds from last year, at 260 pounds.
  • Pork production totaled 2.24 billion pounds, up slightly from the previous year. Hog slaughter totaled 10.5 million head, down 1 percent from November 2016. The average live weight was up 3 pounds from the previous year, at 286 pounds.
  • Lamb and mutton production, at 12.4 million pounds, was up 1 percent from November 2016. Sheep slaughter totaled 188,000 head, 1 percent above last year. The average live weight was 132 pounds, up 1 pound from November a year ago.
January to November 2017 commercial red meat production was 47.6 billion pounds, up 3 percent from 2016.
Accumulated beef production was up 4 percent from last year, veal was down 1 percent, pork was up 3 percent from last year, and lamb and mutton production was down 4 percent.

Got Wow?... The Dairy Checkoff May Be the Envy of All Checkoffs 

Gregory Bloom
You’d have to be pretty young not to know about the famous ‘Got Milk?’ promotional campaign that launched in 1993. If you’ve never seen the first classically funny ‘Got Milk?’ commercial ever made, you can click here to see it. 


The milk mustache, ‘Got Milk?’ and other campaigns are funded by either of the two dairy checkoffs; that’s right, two! Dairy farmers have one checkoff program and milk processors have another.


When you consider that dairy farmers also pay the $1 per head beef checkoff when dairy cows graduate, there are effectively three checkoff programs in the dairy world. Holy cow! You’d think dairy farmers would complain about all this money being used to promote and defend their industry, but in fact, the dairy checkoff is one of the more widely supported checkoffs for all of agriculture. Dairy farmers are very proud of their products, as they should be. I mean, who doesn’t like cheese on their pizza, yogurt, ice cream or butter?


The $325 million annual budget (2015) for the national dairy farmer checkoff program is managed by Dairy Management, Inc. (DMI) and represents over 41,000 U.S. dairy farmers (as well as dairy importers). DMI works with state and regional promotional organizations to implement programs across the country that are designed to increase demand for dairy through education, innovation and research, as well as maintaining consumer confidence in dairy foods. For more information about DMI, click here.


Dairy farmers pay 15 cents and dairy importers pay 7.5 cents per 100 pounds of milk (or equivalent) into the dairy product promotion fund, a.k.a. the ‘dairy checkoff.’ DMI receives five cents of that, and state & regional organizations use the other 10 cents.


That equates roughly to about $36 per head annually. An average dairy cow serves about 5 years, so that’s $180 for each cow.  Beef producers by comparison invest $1 head in their checkoff when they sell, yet they seem to bicker far more often than dairy farmers do about their checkoff program.


The Milk Processor Education Program (MilkPEP) manages the milk processor checkoff. Milk processors pay 20 cents per 100 pounds of milk and use their 90 million-dollar-plus annual budget to promote milk protein with such national campaigns as ‘Milk Life,’ and ‘The Great American Milk Drive. 


I grew up next to a dairy farm and still work closely with many dairies. Over the past 20 years, most dairies have become cleaner, more transparent, and more progressive in the care of their cows. There are still a few dairies working in the dark ages, but these are not the norm. Thanks to cellphone cameras, any dairies that violate sound animal care and handling are being culled out of the system, and rightly so.


Feeder Steers/Corn Correlation:

Historically, the value of 25 bushels of corn is approximately equal to the price per cwt. for feeder steers.


Slaughter Cows & Bulls:

Slaughter cows and bulls mostly 1.00-4.00 higher.  Demand good prior to the holidays. 

Cutter Cow Carcass Cut-Out Value Friday was 168.93 -- Up 2.59 from last Friday. 

                Weight       Colorado       Oklahoma     Alabama  
Breakers 1100-1600  59.00-61.00  55.00-59.50  50.00-55.00 
Boners    1000-1450  57.50-60.00  56.00-60.00  52.00-57.00 
Lean       1000-1300  53.00-57.00   53.50-58.50  46.00-51.00 
Bulls       1300-2500  76.00-79.00   74.00-80.00  74.00-77.00

            Confirmed  Week Ago Year Ago  YTD   Year Ago 
National   7,995       7,853       7,521      42,862    41,132 
S Central 2,491       2,394       1,702      12,188    11,670 
N Central    297          596          801        3,603     3,881 
East         2,212       2,249       1,722      10,563    10,310 
West        1,489       1,014       1,869        7,155     7,106 
Midwest   1,506       1,600       1,427        9,353     8,165 

Est. Weekly Meat Production Under Federal Inspection:

Total red meat production under Federal inspection for the week ending Saturday, December 23, 2017 was estimated at 1043.3 million lbs. according to the U.S.Department of Agriculture's Marketing Service. 
This was 3.3 percent lower than a week ago and 12.0 percent higher than a year ago.  Cumulative meat production for the year to date was 3.3 percent higher compared to the previous year.

Weekly Hay Reports: "Click" on links for detailed report

Weekly Feedstuffs Market Review:

The USDA reports feed ingredient prices for the week ending December 19, 2017 were mixed. 
  • Soybean Meal was 5.50 to 15.50 lower. Cottonseed Meal was steady to 6.00 higher.  Canola Meal was 5.00 to 9.50 lower. Linseed Meal was steady. Sunflower Meal was mixed, 30.00 lower to 10.00 higher. 
  • Whole Cottonseed was steady to 5.00 higher.
  • Crude Soybean Oil was 23 to 48 points lower. Crude Corn Oil was 70 points higher. 
  • Ruminant Meat and Bone Meal was steady to 35.00 higher. Ruminant Blood Meal steady to 25.00 higher with limited comparable sales. Feather Meal was mixed, 5.00 lower to 5.00 higher. Menhaden Fishmeal was steady. 
  • Corn Hominy was steady to 7.00 lower. Corn Gluten Feed was steady to 10.00 higher. Corn Gluten Meal was steady to 48.00 higher, mostly steady to 10.00 higher. 
  • Distillers Dried Grain was steady to 10.00 higher. 
  • Wheat Middlings were mixed, 5.00 lower to 10.00 higher. Wheat millrun was steady to 5.00 higher.

5 Year Bullish/Bearish Consensus Charts:

The theory behind the "Bullish/Bearish Consensus" indicator is when the public reaches a consensus, they are usually wrong:
  • They get too bullish after prices have risen and too bearish after they have already fallen.
Because of this tendency, there are often extremes in opinion right before major changes in trend:
  • When the public reaches a bullish extreme, i.e., a great majority thinks prices will keep rising, then prices often decline instead. 
  • And when they become too bearish, then prices tend to rise.
So when Public Opinion moves above the red dotted linein the chart, it means that compared to other readings over the past year, you're seeing excessive optimism. You also want to look at the absolute level of Opinion, too - if it's at 90%, then there's no question we're seeing an historic level of bullish opinion.  Watch for readings above 80% (or especially 90%) to spot those dangerous times when the public is overly enthusiastic about a commodity.
Conversely, when Public Opinion moves below the green dotted line, then the public is excessively pessimistic about the commodity's prospects for further gains compared to their opinion over the past year.  Looking for absolute readings under 20% (or especially 10%) often indicates an upturn in the market.

Bullish/Bearish Consensus: Cattle

Bullish/Bearish Consensus: Corn.



Stock Markets & Economic News

Stocks recorded modest gains for the week, although most of the advance occurred in the first 15 minutes of trading on Monday. Trading volumes also moderated as the week wore on and investors began to leave town in advance of the Christmas holiday. The smaller-cap benchmarks performed better than their large-cap counterparts, slightly narrowing their considerable performance disadvantage for the year, although they remained a bit below the peaks they established in early December. Within the S&P 500, energy shares led the gains, helped by a rise in oil prices. Traders also pointed to reports that Saudi Arabian producers were looking to acquire assets in U.S. shale-producing regions. Real estate and utilities shares lagged as longer-term Treasury yields rose, making these dividend-heavy sectors less attractive in comparison.
Most observers attributed Monday’s early equity gains to progress over the weekend in moving the Republican tax reform plan forward. As expected, the compromise bill first passed the House and then the Senate -- with a quick trip back to the House to remedy some technical errors -- before being signed into law by President Trump on Friday. The well-worn pattern of “buy the rumor, sell the fact” again seemed to take hold, however, and stocks drifted lower through much of the week.


U.S. Stocks:

USDA Withdraws Welfare Rules for Animals Certified "Organic"

The Trump administration is rolling back Obama-era rules for how animals should be treated if their meat is going to be sold as “certified organic.”


The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced its plan to withdraw the final rules, which were originally set to take effect on March 20 after having been delayed three times.


USDA said the rules exceed the agency’s statutory authority under the Organic Foods Production Act of 1990 to issue animal welfare regulations. The agency called the rules, which govern an animal’s access to outdoor space, transportation and slaughter, among other things, “broadly prescriptive.”


Under the rules, producers and handlers participating in the National Organic Program stipulate that poultry must be housed in spaces that are big enough for the birds to move freely, stretch their wings, stand normally and engage in natural behaviors.


Livestock, meanwhile, must be provided access to an outdoor space year-round and be kept in indoor pens that are sufficiently large, solidly built and comfortable so that the animals are kept clean, dry and free of lesions.


USDA said it's concerned the rules will stunt innovation and growth of the organic industry, which reached $47 billion in sales in 2016, according to figures from the Organic Trade Association.


The Center for Food Safety slammed the USDA for walking back needed clarity on organic animal care.


“In particular, the rules require all animals to have real access to the outdoors, which must include contact with soil and vegetation, and outline minimum spacing requirements for poultry,” Cameron Harsh, the group’s senior manager for organic and animal policy, said in a statement.


“This is, in fact, what consumers already expect from the organic poultry and eggs they buy in stores. But the largest poultry producers have so far been able to consider small, cement, fenced-in areas as outdoor access and have not been required to abide by specific spacing limitations.”


The public has 30 days to comment on USDA’s proposal to withdraw the rule.

"Click Here" to view a Slide Show of Drought Monitor maps for the last 12 weeks


Looking Ahead.Over the next week, beginning Tuesday December 19, a good deal of much needed precipitation is forecast to fall across much of the South and the eastern United States. A swath from eastern Texas to North Carolina, most of Kentucky, and southern Virginia are expected to receive between two and six inches of precipitation. Heavy precipitation is also forecast for the Pacific Northwest, northern Idaho, western Montana, and parts of the Northeast. Dry conditions will likely continue across the Southwest and parts of the southern Plains, where drought conditions already prevailed. Warm temperatures in the South at the beginning of the week will be replaced by cold air sliding down from the north. 


Looking further ahead at NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center (CPC) 6-10 day Outlook (December 24-28), the probability of dry conditions are highest in the Northwest and Midwest, while wet conditions may occur over New Mexico, southeastern Colorado, and Texas, and stretching across the much of the South and along the East Coast. During this period, below-average temperatures are expected over nearly the entire contiguous U.S., except for parts of the Mid Atlantic along the coast and the Southeast, including Florida. 


Looking two weeks out (December 26 - January 1), the cold temperatures are expected to continue, except in Florida and the Southwest. The probability of above-average precipitation is highest over part of Montana and Texas, while below-average precipitation is most likely in the Northwest and much of the northern U.S. from the Northeast to the eastern Dakotas.



USDA Cattle Death Loss Report

Non-predator causes accounted for almost 98% of all deaths in adult cattle and almost 89% of all deaths in calves.


The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Animal Health Monitoring System (NAHMS) has released "Death Loss in U.S. Cattle & Calves Due to Predator & Nonpredator Causes, 2015," a comprehensive report on producer-reported causes of death in cattle and calves in all 50 states.


Since 1995, NAHMS has teamed with USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) and Wildlife Services to produce reports on cattle death loss in the U.S. every five years. This report provides analyses of cattle and calves losses in 2015. In addition, death losses by operation type (beef, dairy, mixed and other) are provided, and when possible, losses in 1995, 2000, 2005 and 2010 were included for comparison.


Losses for adult cattle and for calves are reported separately and are categorized as predator and non-predator related. In addition, producer-reported methods used to mitigate losses due to predators and the cost of those methods are reported.


NAHMS provided a few highlights from the 2015 report:
  • The total U.S. inventory of adult cattle (heavier than 500 lb.) was 78 million head in 2015, and the total calf crop was 34 million head (NASS data).
  • About one-third of cattle operations had deaths in adult cattle.
  • About 40% of cattle operations had deaths in calves.
  • The estimated cost of death loss in cattle and calves in 2015 was $3.87 billion.
  • Non-predator causes accounted for almost 98% of all deaths in adult cattle and almost 89% of all deaths in calves.
  • The percentage of calf deaths attributed to predators increased steadily from 3.5% in 1995 to 11.1% in 2015.
  • Respiratory problems accounted for the highest percentage of deaths in cattle due to non-predator-related causes (23.9%), followed by unknown causes (14.0%) and old age (11.8%).
  • Respiratory problems also accounted for the highest percentage of deaths in calves due to non-predator-related causes (26.9%).
  • Coyotes accounted for the highest percentage of cattle deaths due to predators (40.5%) as well as the highest percentage of calf deaths due to predators (53.1%).

Feedyard Closeouts: Profit/(Loss)


Closeout projections are for cattle placed on feed by a cattle owner at a commercial feedyard and not for cattle owned by a feedyard and fed at cost or a farmer/feeder utilizing his own feed.
Typical closeout for un-hedged steers sold this week:
  • Placed On Feed 165 days ago = July 10th
  • P/(L) based on the futures when placed on feed: $1.54
Cost of 750 lb. steer delivered @ $148.75 per cwt:       $1,127.93
Feed Cost for 600 lbs. @ $76.64 per cwt:                       $460.14
Interest @ Prime + 2% on cattle cost for 165 days:      $29.32
Interest @ Prime + 2% of the feed cost for 165 days:    $5.98
Total Cost & Expense:                                                      $1,623.36


Sale proceeds: 1,350 lb. steer @ $121.00 per cwt:        $1,620.00


This week's Profit/(Loss) per head:                                ($3.36)


Profit/(Loss) per head for previous week:                      ($1.47)
Change from previous week:                                          ($1.89)


Sale price necessary to breakeven:                             $120.25

Projected closeout for steers placed on feed this week:

  • Projected Sale Date @ 165 days on feed = June 5th
Cost of 750 lb. steer delivered @  $150.57 per cwt:        $1,129.28
Feed Cost for 600 lbs. @$ 74.55 per cwt:                          $447.30
Interest @ Prime + 2% on cattle cost for 165 days:        $31.91
Interest @ Prime + 2% of the feed cost for 165 days:       $6.32
Total Cost & Expense:                                                        $1,614.80


Sale proceeds: June Futures @ $112.32 per cwt:           $1,501.20 


This week's Profit/(Loss) per head:                               ($113.60)


Profit/(Loss) per head for previous week:                    ($94.29)
Change from previous week:                                         ($19.31)


Sale price necessary to breakeven:                                  $119.61


Typical closeout for hedged steers sold this week: $1.54 
Typical closeout for un-hedged steers sold this week: ($3.36) 
Projected closeout for steers placed on feed this week: ($113.60)



Slaughter Cattle:

Slaughter Cattle: Friday negotiated trade and demand was mostly inactive on light demand in all feeding regions. On Wednesday, live purchase in the Southern Plains and Nebraska traded at 120.00. Dressed purchases on Wednesday in Nebraska traded mostly at 190.00, few 191.00. On Wednesday in the Western Cornbelt, live purchases traded mostly at 120.00, few up to 121.00 with dressed purchases from 190.00-191.00. On Thursday in Colorado, live purchases traded at 120.00.
Negotiated Sales: Confirmed: 1,500    Week Ago: 15,692    Year Ago: 1,684
Formula Purchases: Net - Dressed 
Head count priced today: 17,600 
Weighted avg weight:      880.00 
Weighted avg net price:   190.67
Livestock Slaughter under Federal Inspection:
                                  CATTLE      CALVES    HOGS        SHEEP 
Friday  (est            117,000     2,000        461,000       6,000 
Week ago (est)      118,000     2,000        452,000      7,000 
Year ago (act)       111,000      3,000       416,000       7,000 
Week to date (est) 588,000   10,000     2,329,000     39,000 
Last Week (est)     593,000   10,000     2,318,000     41,000 
Last Year (act)      568,000    12,000     2,158,000     42,000
Saturday   (est         24,000        0            137,000         0 
Week ago (est)        37,000        0            257,000       2,000 
Year ago (act)           2,000    12,000           4,000         0 
Week to date (est) 612,000    10,000    2,466,000      39,000 
Last Week (est)     630,000    10,000    2,575,000      43,000 
Last Year* (act)     569,000    12,000     2,162,000     42,000 
2017 YTD          31,205,00  491,000 118,393,000 1,895,000 
2016 *YTD         29,594,00  469,000 115,295,000 1,972,000 
Percent change       5.4%       4.7%          2.7%          -3.9%

National Grain Summary:

Compared to last week, cash bids for corn, and sorghum were higher, soybeans were lower and wheat traded mixed.  Beneficial rains in parts of Argentina and Brazil put pressure on the soy complex again this week.  US corn and soybean supplies remain plentiful.  These heavy supplies coupled with a slower US export pace seen so far this year has put bearish pressure on corn and soybean prices.  Last week export sales and shipments of corn totaled 61.3 million and 27.6 million bushels. Soybean export sales and shipments totaled 64.0 million bushels, and 56.6 million bushels, and wheat export sales and shipments totaled 29.3 million bushels and 21.2 million bushels.  All export sales and shipments figures can be viewed as bearish for last week.  Wheat was mixed from 15 cents lower to 11 cents higher.  Corn was 3/4 to 15 3/4 cents higher.  Sorghum was 4 to 49 cents higher.  Soybeans were 14 to 22 cents lower.


Corn futures closed the Friday session with most contracts steady to a penny higher. The March contract had a 6 cent trading range on the week, as the last two weeks has seen a 6 1/2 cent range. Total corn export commitments are now 23.5% lower than the same week last year, gaining slightly on last week. They are 52% of the full year USDA projection, slowly catching the average of 55% but lagging last year’s 62%. Friday’s Commitment of Traders report showed spec traders in corn futures and options adding 24,961 contracts to their net short position of 222,153 contracts in the week ending 12/19. The Buenos Aires Grain Exchange estimates Argentina corn planting progress was 61.2% complete as of Thursday, 15.9% above last week. The crop conditions were rated at 50.8% gd/ex.


Wheat futures saw losses of 2 to 5 1/4 cents in most nearby contracts on Friday, as MPLS was the weakest. Nearby CBT and KC were up 1.55% and 1.14% on the week, respectively, while MPLS lost 1.33%. Total export commitments are now 6.6% behind last year, but grew 2.6% from last week. They are now 72% of the full year USDA export projection, compared to last year’s and the average pace of 76%. BAGE sees the Argentine wheat harvest at 72.5% complete, improving 14.2% from the previous week. Spec funds in Chicago wheat futures and options backed 4,075 contracts off their net short position to -153,577 contracts as of Tuesday.

Five Year Moving Average - Corn & Wheat:


Your Suggestions:

Our goal is for the Weekly Market Summary to provide a comprehensive overview of the week's cattle market.  If you have a suggestion that would enhance the summary, use the link below to submit your suggestion. If we implement it, we'll send you a Cattle Range Knife as a token of our appreciation. 

Although all information is from sources believed to be accurate & timely, The Cattle Range expressly disclaims all warranties, expressed or implied, as to the accuracy of any of the contents provided and shall not be liable for decisions or actions taken based on the data/information/opinions contained within.