Unlike the prior week, last week saw cash fed cattle trade get underway and done decently early. By Thursday afternoon, almost 75,000 head had been confirmed sold, with most of the trade occurring on Thursday. Prices paid for live cattle were down $2-8 at $128- 134.
“Many roads are still closed in Nebraska, Iowa, South Dakota, and Minnesota, which has several beef and pork plants in the area either starting to kill late or cancelling first shift slaughters all together,” reported Troy Vetterkind of Vetterkind Cattle Brokerage last Thursday morning.
When it came to the 2016 Cattle Industry Conference in San Diego, CA, cattle producers and cattle and beef industry members had a lot to look forward to; seeing friends and colleagues, new information and new products, and certainly the pleasant beach weather.
The farm and ranch real estate market in the Far West—California, Oregon, Washington and Nevada—is one of dualities. Challenges are also opportunities, and much of it centers unsurprisingly on water. In general, the market in 2015 was called good by realtors and land brokers, and the outlook looks good for 2016 for the careful buyer and seller.
“The release of a forecast for a storm system early next week that could impact some of the South Plains—and with significant amounts of snow for parts of Nebraska and Iowa—sparked the rally in futures yesterday,” reported Andrew Gottschalk of Hedgers Edge last Wednesday.
Ethan Lane, Executive Director of the Public Lands Council, gave cattle producers just that last week during the Cattlemen’s College, held at the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association’s annual conference and cattle industry trade show in San Diego, CA.
People were less excited to buy cattle last week compared to the prior week. Whereas the prior week saw 90,000 head trade by Thursday, last week couldn’t even muster 4,000 head traded by Thursday. Cattle buyers were likely waiting for the release of the Cattle on Feed report to give the manic market some direction.
Last Tuesday, Obama used his veto power on S.J. Resolution 22, the bill which would have blocked the implementation of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s ) new Waters of the U.S. (WOTUS) rule. Obama called WOTUS “critical” to the protection of.
Considering the magnitude and speed of the crash seen in cattle markets around the country at the end of 2015, much time and effort has been put into explaining why and how it happened. According to one market analyst, domestic supply shifts, outside economies, and trade all played important roles.
Last week was called pivotal for the cash cattle markets with numerous factors coming to bear on prices. The markets’ moving parts have all done a lot of significant moving in the last few weeks, so the direction of what is to come was a matter of much speculation.
Live cattle futures were trading fairly sideways last week after the prior week’s rally. But then Thursday trade, which opened in the U.S. following another day of the Chinese stock exchange trading locked down after mere minutes of opening, saw limit-down trade in almost all contracts on the board.
Of all the portions of the country, the Southwest tends to have the lowest pasture and overall farm real estate value (a measurement of the value of all land and buildings on farms). But with low prices comes the potential for opportunity..
Last week, the Ranchers- Cattlemen Action Legal Fund (R-CALF) sent a request to the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary and its Subcommittee on Antitrust, Competition Policy, and Consumer Rights that they investigate the cattle market’s unprecedented decline at the end of 2015.
In the short, pre-New Year’s trade week, cash cattle traded early and sharply higher. By Wednesday afternoon, over 40,000 head had been confirmed sold on the negotiated market at $130-136 live (up $4-14 from the prior week) and $202-212 dressed (up $2-12).
Though cattle slaughter still favors herd growth—steers made up 54.3 percent of total cattle slaughtered in 2015, up 2.4 percent from the same time last year—beef in cold storage keeps climbing. According to the most recent Cold Storage report, the volume of beef in all warehouses stood at 510.
Just before Christmas, Montana Governor Steve Bullock released a decision that has been a decade and a half coming. The result is several hundred thousand acres of public land have been accepted for increased “tolerance zones” for bison migrating out of Yellowstone National Park.
The market year of 2015 was head-spinning in its difference from 2014. While this holds true generally across all sectors of the market, it was most poignantly felt by cattle feeders. The year 2014 was a record up year for feeder cattle prices, 2015 may well prove to be one of the worst down years for cattle feeders.