Friday, August 26, 2005

Beef cow slaughter as a percentage of the cow herd reached its lowest level since August of 1991 week before last when it touched on 0.120%. The percentage of the cow herd going to slaughter dropped markedly in late February when spring grass greened up in some parts of the country. So far in 2005, 4.54% of the beef cow herd has gone to slaughter. That compares to 4.97% last year and an average of 5.38% for 1999-2003. This year's cumulative beef cow slaughter as a percent of the breeding herd is the LOWEST figure in my data set which dates back to 1986.
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Monday, August 15, 2005

Price Projections and Their Associated Management Implications -- A series of 4 Charts: As producers think about marketing their 2005 calves, I have a recommend procedure that I would like to have cattlemen go through to analyze their 2005 marketing alternatives. Start out with the local salebarn prices for last week. The prices for your local salebarn are posted on the internet by USDA AMS. This price line was for Western Central Nebraska and represented the sale price for about 2000 cattle the week of 29 July 05. 500 to 600 lb calves sold for $127 to $139 with an average of 550 lbs steer feeders at $133 per cwt. Posted by Picasa

Chart 2 in this series of 4: Basis is the economic concept that can be used to localize the Chicago Futures Prices back to a local market -- in this case, Western and Central Nebraska. The current cash price for each weight of feeder cattle was use to calculate a basis for each weight of feeder steer. The formula was Cash minus Futures. These basis values are used to calculate the planning prices presented in the next figure in this series. Posted by Picasa

Table 3 in this series presents my price projections for critical makreting periods for the rest of 2005 and all of 2006. These are my current (as of 29 July 05) planning prices for 2005 and 2006 calves. I try to re-estimate these planning prices each month taking into account what market forces have changed since the last set of projections. Posted by Picasa

This Table No 4 in this series presents the management implications of the planning prices. The top half of the table is for Spring Born Calves and the bottom half of the table is for Summer Born Calves. Profit for a specific produciton/marketing alternative is determined by both the buy/sell margin on the original weight of the feeders and the Cost Of Grain (COG) on the lbs added in the feedlot or on pasture.  Posted by Picasa

Jan 1, 2005 Beef Cow Numbers: Each year USDA releases the All-Cattle Inventory Numbers and one of those numbers is the number of beef cows by state.  Posted by Picasa

Market Comments

source: CME Daily Livestock Newsletter 8-15-05

There were no surprises in USDA's monthly update of supply projections for 2005 and 2006. The chart to the left sum�marizes the relative supply situation of the four main meat species and the expected growth in 2005 and 2006.

If any�thing, the chart should be useful in understanding that despite much talk of daily increases or declines in production, overall beef, pork, and poultry meat production in 2005 and 2006 is expected to continue to increase across the board. Indeed, if we also add up the pounds of lamb, mutton, veal and other poultry produced, US red meat and poultry production in 2006 is now expected to exceed 90 billion pounds, a new all time record amount.

The chart also shows which areas of the meat industry are growing, and which ones are not. The fact that beef produc�tion is expected to increase 2.6% in 2005 and 3.1% in 2006 points to the need for quick resumption of exports. Current beef exports have increased compared to last year but still remain (for first six months) as much as 76% lower than the levels reached in 2003.

On the other hand, the growth in broiler pro�duction remains robust. Just as a quick aside, it is worth not�ing that since 1980, beef tonnage has increased by 3.5 billion pounds, pork tonnage by 4.2 billion and broiler tonnage by 24.3 billion pounds.
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