The coronavirus is another “black swan” that is different in some fundamental ways from other such events in cattle markets, such as the packing plant fire last year or even the first BSE case in late 2003.
The latest monthly cattle on feed report showed the January 1 inventory in feedlots (over 1,000 head) at 11.958 million head, 102.3 percent of one year ago. This is the largest January on-feed total since 2008.
The early winter storm in late October brought timely and much-needed rain to much of Oklahoma and sharply reduced drought conditions. Feeder cattle prices jumped sharply from the low two weeks ago during the storm.