The Canfax average steer and heifer price closed the week at $115.00/cwt and $114.50/cwt respectively, steady to $0.50/cwt lower than the previous week. Bids strengthened over the course of the week and the bulk of dressed traded was reported at $193.00-194.00 delivered. The softer Canadian dollar did encourage small volumes of Canadian cattle to be formula priced to the US. Accumulated sale volumes last week totaled 12,200. Last week’s Alberta cash to future basis was reported at -11.19. Canadian fed exports to the US for the week ending January 12th totaled 4,452. Buying interest was generally sluggish last week and all classes of feeders were reported lower. The Canfax average steer price closed the week $3.42 lower while heifers eased $2.32. 3-400 steer and heifer calves were generally $5.00 lower than the previous week while 5-700 heifers were reported $2.00 lower. The Western Canadian feeder index was quoted at $130.16/cwt, down $4.28. Alberta auction volumes totaled 18,100, steady with the previous week. Canadian feeder exports to the US for the week ending January 12th totaled 1,790. Following an initial flush of slaughter cows during the first half of January, non-fed volumes have started to moderate. D1, D2 cows strengthened $1.65, with live trade reported from 67.00-78.00/cwt. D3 cows averaged $65.00/cwt up $2.50 from the previous week. Last week butcher bulls eased $2.25/cwt and live trade was reported from $67.00-83.00/cwt. Canadian non-fed exports to the US for the week ending January 12th totaled 8,589.

Bull factors

  • Last week box beef load counts were the largest since the second week of October

  • Traders should interpret USDA’s January 1 cattle on feed report as bullish

  • The softer Canadian dollar should encourage both live and boxed beef exports

Bear factors

  • Choice and select cutout values closed the week $4.19 and $2.17 lower respectively

  • Beef demand could remain sluggish with holiday bills coming due

  • North American carcass weight remain above year ago levels

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