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Markets

2015 May 8
Unusual market conditions lead to unusual incentives that result in unusual market behavior. This makes markets unusually difficult to figure out. There is considerable variability in views across the industry about the current and coming fed cattle market for the remainder of 2015.
2015 May 1
You are at a feeder sale. A load of 400-pound calves sells for an average of $345 per hundredweight. Later in the day, a load of 700-pounders sells for an average of $225/cwt. What you’ve just seen is the market at work assigning relative value to the differing weights.


by WLJ
2015 May 1
“USDA’s monthly Cattle On Feed report was the same song and pretty much the same verse,” said Steve Meyer and Len Steiner of the CME Daily Livestock Report of the recent report. They summed up the performance as “Big feeder cattle, low placement numbers, even lower marketings and tight, tight inventories.


by WLJ
2015 May 1
In 2013, steers made up 50.1 percent of the total cattle processed. For 2014, that number is 51.8 percent. Heifer slaughter declined very slightly, from 28.6 percent in 2013 to 28.2 percent in 2014. Cow slaughter declined most notably—18.1 percent compared to 19.


by WLJ
2015 April 24
Despite these conditions, U.S. fresh fruit and vegetable price inflation is expected to be close to its historical average in 2015. USDA Economic Research Service predicts fresh fruit prices will increase 2.5-3.5 percent and fresh vegetable prices 2-3 percent.


by WLJ
2015 April 24
If farmers would have adopted the practice even without financial incentive, however, the practices are not “additional,” and the payments provide income for farmers without improving environmental quality.


by WLJ
2015 April 24
Beef exports add well beyond $300 to the value of each head of cattle annually, but without people like Dan Chase, Liz Wunderlich and Alberto Diaz, that number might not be so high. Wunderlich and Diaz each work in their own ways to build demand for U.


by WLJ
2015 April 17
The balances of beef in 2015 changed quite a bit in the most recent World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates report. USDA raised its predictions on beef production by 150 million pounds (mp) to 24.28 billion pounds (bp) mostly on increased cow slaughter and heavier carcass weights.


by WLJ
2015 April 10
While still impacted by severe congestion in the West Coast ports, February exports of U.S. beef, pork and lamb bounced back to some degree from the totals posted in January, according to data released by USDA and compiled by the U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF).
2015 April 6
Conversations about demand often devolve into arguments about proverbial apples and oranges. This happens on the topics of beef demand and cattle demand quite frequently. One party is talking about bad (beef) demand while the other party scratches their head, thinking about the record high prices they just got for their calves.
2015 April 6
Cash trade was put off to the end of the short trade week last week. Due to Good Friday ahead of Easter, markets closed early last Thursday and were closed for the holiday. So packers, putting off spending money for cattle, had less time to stall last week…but they sure tried.
by WLJ
2015 April 3
After historically high average net cash farm in- come (NCFI) in 2012 and 2013, average NCFI is expected to decline 22.7 percent in 2014F-15F for U.S. farm businesses (defined as farms with annual gross cash farm income greater than $350,000, or smaller operations where the operator’s primary occupation is farming), the lowest level since 2010-11.
2015 April 3
Among the top proteins in the U.S. consumer’s diet, beef comes from the most diverse infrastructure of them all. The cattle and beef industry is so highly segmented that each segment exists in its own economic microcosm. When it comes to margins, the variety of this one, relatively small industry can be mind boggling.