Lon Felts with Producers Livestock Auction Company has the latest local, regional, and national headlines for livestock and agriculture, including sales, trends, and futures.
Today we begin the sale with 1700 head of cattle on the yard. There will be a special calf sale in conjunction with the regular sale that should begin right the packers cows and bulls. We have several nice sets of calves and yearlings along with some cows to px this morning. Last week we had a nice offering of calves and yearlings to start the year. There is a special cow sale on February 13 and this will be in conjunction with our regular sale. If you would like consign early, please give us a call and we can get your cattle into advertising.
San Angelo-Producers Livestock Auction sold 1635 head of cattle. Compared with our last sale of 2019, heavyweight feeder steers & heifers sold near steady. Choice lightweight calves sold fully 10.00-15.00 higher with most increase on the steer calves. Slaughter cows & bulls sold firm to 2.00 higher. Limited supply of replacement cows sold near steady.
Better Quality Steers: 400-600 lbs, 130.00-210.00, mostly 145.00-175.00, 600-800 lbs, 115.00-155.00, mostly 125.00-145.00 Better Quality Heifers: 400-600 lbs, 115.00-160.00, mostly 125.00-145.00, 600-800 lbs, 100.00-135.00, mostly 115.00-125.00 Slaughter Cows: Average to high yield 46.00-56.00, thinner or lower yielding cows 28.00-44.00 Slaughter Bulls: Average to high yield 60.00-75.00, several very highest yielding bulls 77.00-85.00
San Angelo-Producers Livestock Auction sold 7801 head of sheep and goats. Wooled feeder lambs sold 10.00 to 15.00 lower. Slaughter lambs 10.00 to 15.00 lower in some cases on heavier weights near 30.00 lower. Slaughter ewes sold 10.00 to 20.00 lower. Kid goats sold near steady. Slaughter nannies 1.00 to 1.62 mostly 1.25 to 1.40 Mature billies 1.50 to 1.96 Wooled Feeder lambs: 1.62 to 2.42 Slaughter Lambs: light weight 2.00 to 2.62 heavies 1.50 to 2.20 Slaughter ewes: fleshy 80 to 1.10 thin ewes 60 to .80 Kid goats: 2.40-3.68 mostly 2.70 to 3.00
The Cutout. The cutout prices improved for both choice and select cuts. The improvement of the past few weeks has narrowed the choice/select spread to under $3 as grading nationally improved.
The first quarter seasonally is the narrowest choice/select spread of the year. Choice closed at 212.76 up 2.21 and select closed at 210.30 up 2.07
Live cattle futures for February closed at 126.60 down a quarter and April closed at 127.50 down 37 cents with forward months all down. Feeder cattle futures for January closed at 145.42 down 47 cents and March closed at 145.17 down 55 cents with forward months mixed. Grain Futures. Corn was lower as hope for large ag purchases wanes. The corn basis is moving higher at 65 over the March board in Guymon, Oklahoma. Corn is now pricing into ration at $8.00 cwt. in the Oklahoma Panhandle.
In the south, two pens of cattle sold on the online exchange at $124.25 barely higher than last week but some indication packers are will to push for cattle this week. The sales volumes for last week were small and packers will need to add more cattle this week and possibly before Friday. Cattle owners accepted steady prices of $124-125 live, and $200 dressed. A few live trades in Iowa at $126 or one higher.
Seasonally beef demand improves in late January following a lapse after the holidays. There were some signs box prices were turning higher in the cutout this week. Last week’s slaughter of 640,000 head was 10,000 over last year. The composite cutout was $5 lower than last year for the first time in several months [choice cutout $210 vs. $214 last year]. Live prices for fed cattle are flat with last year.
Grid and formula results for the past few months has been driven by quality grade. Large or small differences in grading translated into large differences in value received on the cattle. With a narrowing of the choice/select spread to just only $2, the value of the higher grading cattle disappears and it makes very little difference to outcome. Carcass yield returns as the dominant factor in determining value.
The Comprehensive Fed Cattle Weekly Report offers the most current information on the current status of fed cattle being
harvested. The report is published each Tuesday and includes the previous week’s change in carcass weights and quality grading. The latest report shows carcass weights moved 3.5# lower at 881# which remains 21# over last year. Quality grade grading decreased .2% from prior week to 82.8%. The improved grading has quickly narrowed the choice/select spread from a high of $26 to the current $3.
The impact of smaller volumes of beef imports has supported the cutout mainly through the 90% lean. The Australian fires and drought will force more liquidation and price declines in much of their exported beef.
Feedyard occupancy has remained high and the new year opened with large volumes of trades for replacement cattle across all areas of the country. Grow yard cattle will increase in number as a percentage of available cattle on offer. It is always tempting during the height of fall runs to purchase discounted unweaned calves and attempt a short term margin in a grow yard. The venture can be successful providing weather and health issues don’t condemn the operation. It is always easy to underestimate the medicine cost, death loss, and performance.
The large cow slaughter for 2019 will likely signal the end of expansion of the national cattle numbers. Likewise the calf crop and feeder supplies both are likely to have peaked. Numbers of cattle on feed and placements will enter a leveling out period.
Oklahoma City. The auction market report extremely variable prices with feeder steers higher, feeder heifers lower, and calves up as much as $10 cwt..
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