Market News & Headlines >> Moderate Cattle Herd Expansion Seen

Friday afternoon’s semiannual Cattle Inventory report from USDA is expected to show that the U.S. cattle herd grew moderately in 2015 as high feeder cattle prices prompted feeder cattle producers to expand their operations. 

Trade estimates of the total U.S. cattle herd average 102% of a year earlier in arrange from 101.5-102.3%, according to a Reuters News Service survey of three analysts. 

Estimates of the total U.S. cow herd average 102.6% of a year earlier in a range from 101.9%-103.85%, with estimates of the beef cow herd averaging 103.4% of a year earlier in a range from 102.4%-105.1%. 

The report is expected to indicate an acceleration of beef herd expansion with estimates of the supply of heifers kept for beef cow replacement purposes averaging 105.0% in a range from 103.5%-107.3%. 

Estimates of the 2015 calf crop average 102.4% of a year earlier in a range from 101.2%-104.1% of a year earlier.