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Cattle and Beef Markets

2016 October 14
If you’re a market watcher, you’ve noticed the extreme drop-off in trim prices this year. A history-focused market watcher would additionally note today’s 50 percent lean trim prices are almost half of what they were when consumer panic over “pink slime”— properly called lean fine-textured beef—tanked that market in 2012.


2016 October 7
Despite calls for a late-week trade in the cash fed cattle market, by Thursday afternoon over 62,000 head had been confirmed sold throughout the week. Prices were slightly lower than the prior week—$99-103 live and $157-160 dressed—which was in keeping with early-week expectations, but the speed at which the trade was accomplished was unexpected.


2016 September 30
Do you have your market umbrella out? The sky is falling again. The cash fed cattle trade was ugly last week as cash prices again flirted with the $100 point. Trade volume was surprisingly high and sales came surprisingly early. Over 60,000 head had been confirmed sold by close of trade Wednesday at $103-104 live and $160-163 dressed prices.


by DTN
2016 September 30
This continues the discussion that ran in the Aug. 15 issue on tax alternatives to assist with higher education costs. Section 529 college savings plans, already a popular tool for parents and grandparents to invest funds for a youngster’s higher education costs, were recently enhanced by Congress.


by USDA
2016 September 30
Improvements in how efficiently inputs are transformed into outputs, known as Total Factor Productivity (TFP), fueled almost all of the output growth. Advancements in technology—such as improvements to machinery, seeds, and farm structures—enabled agricultural TFP to grow an average of 1.
2016 September 30
The announcement of a new agreement that will open China to Canadian beef appears to be a significant development and a sign of a warming political relationship between the two nations, according to officials of the U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF), who are interested to see the ramifications of this agreement for U.


2016 September 23
Since 1978, the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City has hosted an annual economic policy symposium. The event is designed as a forum for central bankers, policy experts and academics to come together to focus on a topic that is not necessarily of immediate concern, but instead looks at future emerging issues and trends.


2016 September 23
The cash fed trade was almost non-existent ahead of the September Cattle on Feed report last week. By close of trade Thursday, not even 3,000 head had been confirmed sold. On the Fed Cattle Exchange, four lots totaling 775 head of mixed steers and heifers from Kansas sold for $110-110.50.


2016 September 23
Stocker producers have numerous decisions to make when purchasing stocker cattle including the weight, gender, and quality of cattle to buy. The appropriate choice for individual producers depends on the objectives of the stocker program and the type of production system.


2016 September 23
Typically the sale of cull cows accounts for 15 to 30 percent of the yearly gross revenues of cow/calf operations in the U.S. Historic cull cow prices over the past 30 years have been the lowest in November, December and January; and at their highest in level in March, April and May.


2016 September 16
Cash cattle traders were sitting on their hands last week after the prior week’s precipitous fall. By Thursday afternoon, not even 3,000 head had been reported sold, this not including the almost 1,000 head that sold at auction via the Fed Cattle Exchange.


2016 September 16
Given the multitude of adjustments underway in the cattle markets, it is useful to assess most recent estimates of closeout returns offered in Kansas State University’s (K- State’s) Kansas Feedlot Net Return series to extend understanding of the current situation faced by feedlots.


2016 September 16
“With the recent news from New Zealand of a drought and the decrease in supplies available to import, as well as the strengthening of the New Zealand dollar against the U.S. dollar, the hope for U.S. producers is that there will be less imports, thus taking the pressure off domestic supply,” Sand said.


2016 September 16
But, while potent, auctions are not the only form of cash price discovery. When it comes to the fed cattle markets, auctions are almost unheard of—the Fed Cattle Exchange notwithstanding (see the story on this issue’s cover)—and concern over negotiated cash fed trade grows as its volume declines.


2016 September 2
It was more than a bit of a crazy week last week for the markets. Not only did the cash fed cattle market see large volumes of cattle trade every day of the week starting Monday. By close of trade Thursday, over 85,000 head had sold at painful prices..



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