Pre-Holiday Cattle Trade Disappointment

Cattle trade disappointing ( CBP )

Feeders knew selling ahead of a short holiday week would create additional challenges for cash cattle prices and the ability to move cattle. Disappointing trade volumes were anticipated in the south area by most feeders.  Unfortunately, the south trade volume met expectations with low cattle movement but also at lower prices. The cash trade ranged mostly $95-$97 with a few trading even lower. 

The north’s trade was at a somewhat greater volume than the south, but still at a lower volume than what would be considered normal volume for all feeders at this time of the year. The north saw its live market range from $95 up to mostly $99, with dressed trade of $153 up to $156 per cwt.

Feeders are hopeful for a larger trade volume over the next few weeks.   Show lists continue to swell with market-ready cattle that are in excess of producer’s ability to move and packers need for inventory.  As market-ready cattle numbers grow, the ability of feeders to have any leverage trading their cattle diminishes. 

As we move through the next few weeks feeders will find their only position is to take what price they can get to move out as many big cattle as possible. Cleaning up this backlog of cattle is the only hope of moving the cash trade back in a more positive direction.

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