Feeder Cattle Receipts Higher, Prices Lower

For the second consecutive week, feeder cattle auction receipts increased substantially following February’s storms. Prices, however, declined again for the second week as demand was called moderate to good.

Agricultural Marketing Services reporters called last week’s prices $1 to $4 per cwt. at auctions across the nation.

Many wheat pasture cattle were headed to town as early March is the time to pull cattle from grazing wheat. Large receipts of wheat cattle were found at Kansas and Oklahoma auctions. AMS reporters said wheat pasture cattle were hardened up by the recent winter weather and more attractive to feeder cattle buyers.

Last week’s fed cattle market traded at $114 in the South Plains, with dressed sales in the North at $178 to $180. Cattle feeders sold 25,000 of the 80,000 head for 15-30 day delivery. Packers already control a large number of formula and contract cattle for March, leading analysts to speculate cash prices will be softer this week.

Auction receipts last week were 282,800, compared to 216,800 the week before, and 179,900 a year ago.

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