Market News & Headlines >> August Feedlot Placements Below Expectations
Friday afternoon’s monthly USDA Cattle-on-Feed report looked friendly for the live cattle market as it pegged August feedlot placements below the range of trade expectations, however, the report also confirmed continued slow feedlot marketings.
USDA pegged August placements at 94.6% of a year earlier, below trade estimates that averaged 100.2% in a range from 95.5%-103.2%, according to a Reuters survey. As a result, the Sept. 1 feedlot inventory, at 102.7% of a year earlier, was toward the lower end of trade estimates that averaged 103.4% in a range from 101.2%-104.1%.
August marketings came in at 93.8% of a year earlier, toward the low end of trade estimates that averaged 94.6% in a range from 93.5%-98.4%. August marketings of 1.588 million head were 104,000 head below a year earlier and were the lowest on record for the month in USDA data going back to 1996. Feedlot marketings have now been record low for eight consecutive months.
August feedlot placements of 1.632 million head were 93,000 head below a year earlier and were also the lowest on record for the month in USDA data going back to 1996. While August placements were down from last year in three of the four weight categories, placement of cattle in the heaviest weight class – 800 pounds and up – were 3.4% higher, continuing a recent trend of high placement weights.
In actual numbers, the September 1 U.S. feedlot inventory totaled 9.986 million head, up 267,000 head from a year earlier and down 16,000 head from a month earlier.