Market Coverage

Cattle Buyers Weekly each week reports on the live cattle and beef markets. It talks to numerous players, including producers, packers, foodservice and retail beef buyers, livestock and meat analysts, to gain an in-depth understanding of key market factors. Subjects include: 

  • live cattle and futures price movement

  • cattle feedlot sales activity

  • wholesale beef prices and reported boxed beef volumes.

  • Monthly cattle on feed previews, including top analysts’ forecasts of Cattle on Feed data

  • retail featuring and pricing

  • key consumption trends.

  • imports and exports of livestock and meats.

Here’s an excerpt from a recent story.

One concern is the low reported boxed cuts volume last week and all month. Since the week starting Feb. 28, there have been only three days when more than 300 boxes of cuts were reported sold. That week saw only 1304 boxes reported, followed by 1074 and 979 boxes the next two weeks. Only 920 boxes were reported sold Monday through Thursday last week. Some fear that packers are rationing product and will have to “puke” up product to clear inventories. But a more likely explanation is that other factors are causing the reporting of fewer sales than normal. First, export sales are up 8-9% on last year. These aren’t reported. Second, packers have sold a lot of product forward. These sales don’t fall within USDA’s reporting time frame. So they’re not being reported. Most of this product is middle meats. Ironically though, they were contracted at lower prices than current spot prices, say analysts. Conversely, discounted end meats are not being reported. Mandatory price reporting would definitely produce a lower cutout than is being reported right now, they say.

Cattle Buyers Weekly, March 27, 2000


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