Fed cattle lower
With good captive supply packers have been able to pressure fed cattle prices lower.
Fed steers averaged $108.36 per hundredweight, down $1.47 and heifers were $108.27, down 88 cents. Alberta railgrade sales averaged $180.50.
Live fed prices are at the lowest level of this year and have not been below $109 per cwt. since October 2011.
But rising cattle futures and a weak loonie on June 28 provided a strong finish to the week.
Despite the late rally, many producers opted to carry cattle into this week.
Sales totalled 13,699, down 17 percent from the previous week.
The week’s cash-to-futures basis weakened $2.18, to -$11.31.
Negotiated sales of Canadian cattle to the U.S. were at a slight premium to local sales.
Weekly fed exports to June 16 totalled 5,920, down three percent.
Beef demand typically falls following the July 1 holiday and cattle supplies could increase, leading to weaker fed prices.
Cow prices fall
Non-fed slaughter prices fell as the U.S. drought forced producers with poor pastures to ship cattle.
Slaughter cow prices fell 35 cents per cwt. D1, D2 cows ranged $76-$86 to average $81.13 and D3s were $65-$77 to average $72.10.
Rail prices were mostly steady at $148-$154 per cwt.
Butcher bulls slipped $1 to average $97.82.
Weekly Western Canadian non-fed slaughter to June 23 fell 10 percent to 4,480 head. Weekly exports to June 16 rose 12 percent to 5,169 head.
Feeder prices were mixed with steers falling 20 cents per cwt. and heifers rising $1.
Auction volume surged following a three week decline as a couple of markets put together special sales.
Non-fed volumes continue to make up a large part of the weekly offering.
Steers up to 700 pounds were steady while steers 700-900 lb. fell $1.
Steers heavier than 900 lb. rose 50 cents on good demand.
Heifers heavier than 400 lb. were steady to $1 higher. Larger heifers rose $2.75.
Auction volume rose 31 percent to 14,428 head.
Weekly feeder exports to June 16 were down 25 percent at 2,354 head.
Drought in the U.S. and Mexico is raising grain prices and pushing feeders to market.
Tight feeder supplies in Western Canada have so far maintained fairly strong prices, and volumes are expected to continue smaller, but if feed prices continue to rise it could pressure feeder bids.
Beef under pressure
U.S. beef cutouts were mixed with the Choice composite slipping $1 and Select gaining $1.50.
Ground beef prices are falling as more U.S. slaughter cows go to market.
The Montreal wholesale market for delivery this week was steady at $210-$212.
Weekly Canadian cutout to June 22 fell with AAA dropping $1.43 and AA falling $1.14.
This cattle market information is selected from the weekly report from Canfax, a division of the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association. More market information, analysis and statistics are available by becoming a Canfax subscriber by calling 403-275-5110 or at www.canfax.ca.