Beef Market Update: One Step Forward, Two Steps Back

While there have been a few days lately where cattle values have ended the day in the green, the trend is still headed lower. And quickly.

Cattle futures are now at levels we haven’t seen since the fourth quarter of 2010.

“We haven’t been here for a long time. We really weren’t expecting these levels this soon from a supply perspective,” notes Anne Wasko of Gateway Livestock in this latest Beef Market Update, recorded October 14.

Even if you wanted to pick the more favourable perspective, neither fundamental nor technical signals are showing signs of the market reaching a bottom at this point.

“It’s probably a time to stand back rather than make a bold decision that the markets have made their bottom,” she says. “I’d be more cautious and let hte market show me that it’s clearly made a bottom.”

Meanwhile, we’re starting to see some US feeder cattle make there way north, thanks to favourable pricing in Canadian dollar terms, explains Wasko.

Shaun and Anne chat about the new lows, the relationship between wholesale and retail prices heading into the U.S. holiday season, some potentially good news about the Trans-Pacific Partnership, and why the heck Tyson Foods is buying shares in vegan burger company:

2 thoughts on “Beef Market Update: One Step Forward, Two Steps Back

  1. Would it be wish to feed a persons calves through till feb and then market them. Besides gain on my calves and the cost to feed them do you think the price may go up?

    1. Dan – This cattle market has been dishing out lots of surprises the least of which is trying to figure out where it goes between now and spring. On any given day the forecast can change a great deal. Today a Jan/Feb 850 feeder str in AB is suggesting something in the mid $130’s (US futures, exchange rate & historic basis/spread). The Cattle Price Insurance for mid Feb feeders in AB was $136 gross today ($6.63 premium) meaning just under $130 for insurance. Based on the news of the day, this is where markets are forecasting price presently. Lots, however, can change between now and then.

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