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Agricultural News

Cattle On Feed Placements Expected to Fall Below Year-Ago Levels for the First Time in Over a Year

Wed, 18 Apr 2018 10:30:12 CDT

Cattle On Feed Placements Expected to Fall Below Year-Ago Levels for the First Time in Over a Year

For 13 consecutive months, the USDA’s monthly Cattle on Feed reports have indicated year-over-year increases in the number of cattle being placed into feedyards. In anticipation of the next On Feed report out from the USDA this coming Friday, Jim Robb of the Livestock Market Information Center, shared his predictions which include perhaps the chance to see placements fall below year-ago levels for the first time in over a year.

“As we look ahead to this Cattle on Feed report which will be the April 1 count of the placements for the month of March, we see those placements down year-over-year for the first time in over 13 months,” he said. “I’m thinking the overall market analyst community will have these placements down 5-10 percent year-over-year with maybe even a few with larger year-over-year declines.”

According to Robb, placements for the month of March are currently down about six percent year-over-year - but he notes that is in comparison to rather large numbers seen in March of last year which totaled approximately a record 2.1 million head. This influx of cattle was likely due to drought conditions intensifying across the Southern Plains at the time that forced these cattle into feedyards a bit early. Robb anticipates that this time around, marketings might fall about four percent below year-ago levels, given a slight distortion in the numbers reported since there was one more slaughter day recorded that has augmented the daily rate of marketing. Overall, Robb says this report will not necessarily be out rightly positive, but not clearly negative either when you pencil out the math.

“It will leave us with an on feed count of about eight percent above a year ago. That’s a large number still to work through and very much in line with recent months,” he said. “So, is this a major turning point? We still have more cattle than a year ago in our beef production system. A lot of cattle have clearly been placed in feedyards and we think this report will start to reflect that.”

Listen to Jim Robb of the LMIC layout his predictions for the upcoming Cattle on Feed report this week, with Radio Oklahoma Ag Network Farm Director Ron Hays, on today’s Beef Buzz.

The Beef Buzz is a regular feature heard on radio stations around the region on the Radio Oklahoma Network and is a regular audio feature found on this website as well. Click on the LISTEN BAR below for today's show and check out our archives for older Beef Buzz shows covering the gamut of the beef cattle industry today.



Listen to Jim Robb of the LMIC layout his predictions for the upcoming Cattle on Feed report this week
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