Cash fed cattle sold $1 to $2 higher, but yearling feeder cattle sold uneven at auction with steer and heifer calves trading $1 to $4 lower.
The latest numbers released by the USDA were neutral in numbers of cattle on feed, total numbers of placements and marketings as compared to trade expectations.
Cash fed cattle sold steady to higher in all regions and feeder cattle sold higher. Slaughter numbers improved, but carcass weight data revealed an increase of 43 pounds over the 5-year average.
Cattle on feed data shows the largest number of cattle in feedlots during February since 2008, while placements were 99.4% of year ago, a little smaller than expected.
Higher prices anticipated in 2012 with analysts expecting the cattle cycle to post its high in 2013.
USDA’s Oct. 1 Cattle on Feed report confirmed recent bullish ideas for cattlemen.
All cattle feeding areas were able to take advantage of the packer’s need for cattle last week and cash prices moved higher.
Uncertainty plagues cattle markets with broader trade and political strife augmented by evolving feed market conditions. How much higher corn will go depends on acreage and yield, both uncertain at this time.