Calves, Feeder Cattle Much Lower
With the largest auction volume reported by the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) since 2010, feeder steers and heifers were quoted $5 to 10 per cwt. lower, with instances of $15 lower. Steer and heifer calves under 550 pounds sold steady to $5 lower.
AMS reporters counted 372,300 head at auction the week ended Jan. 12, which compares to 367,500 the same week last year. The weekly total, including direct and video sales, was 530,300 head.
“Demand was moderate for most longtime weaned and preconditioned cattle,” AMS said. “Lackluster futures market late last week followed through into this week and contributed to the sharp losses occurring in the sale rings throughout the country.”
AMS also suggested some feedlots “had limited interest to procure large numbers of cattle with another round of bone-chilling temps headed their way.”
Cash fed cattle traded at $120 live, $1 to $2 lower, and $190 to $193 dressed, $2 to $5 lower for the week. The Choice cutout ended Friday at $208.23, down from last Friday’s $209.51. Select cutout traded at $201.64, compared to last Friday’s $202.32. The Choice-select spread was $6.59.