Light to moderate trade developed last week with weighted average prices $0.75-1.25/cwt lower than the previous week. The bulk of the dressed trade was at $195.00/cwt delivered. Alberta fed cash to futures basis closed last week at -11.33. Last week’s small cash offering was cleaned up with accumulated sale volumes of 12,393. Canadian fed exports to the US for the week ending January 5th were up 33% from the same week last year.

Feeder prices eased slightly lower last week with 550 lb steers trading $0.50/cwt lower and heavier steers over 800 lbs generally $1.50/cwt lower. Feeder heifer prices were mostly steady to $1.00/cwt lower. Auction volumes remained seasonally moderate again last week at 18,307 head. YTD auction volumes of 29,097 head are 1% smaller than the same week last year. Canadian feeder exports to the US for the week ending January 5th were 58% lower than same week last year. Last week’s calf index softened $2.06 and the feeder index followed suit slipping $2.29.

D1,2 slaughter cow prices firmed over $1.50/cwt higher this week and D3 cows traded $0.50/cwt higher, dressed prices ranging from around $136.00-141.00/cwt. Butcher bulls traded fully steady to average $76.80/cwt. Western Canadian non-fed slaughter for the week ending January 12th was at 9,279 head and YTD was up 41% at 11,909 head. Canadian non-fed exports to the US for the week ending January 5th YTD were 35% higher than the same week last year.

Bull factors

  • The fed basis tightened $2 to align with the five-year seasonal average

  • Collapsed cattle futures are expected to rebound somewhat this week

  • Combined Canadian carcass weights for the week ending Jan 12 were 11 lbs lower than the same week last year

Bear factors

  • Post-holiday demand remains lackluster and cutouts last week trended sharply lower

  • Western Canada December fed marketings were down 25% compared to 2012

  • The strong Canadian dollar continues to dampen American buyer interest in local fed cattle

For more detailed information on markets this week please visit the Canfax website