Canada cattle report: Market hurt by stagnant beef demand

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Stagnant beef demand continues to plague the North American cattle complex. Alberta direct fed sales however, were able to hold prices mostly steady with the previous week. The majority of sales last week were dressed from $194.00-196.00/cwt. delivered. Weighted average steer prices were fully steady with the previous week, while average heifers prices eased $0.50/cwt lower. Weekly sale volumes were 50% larger than the previous week. The Alberta cash to futures basis firmed to -11.02. Western Canadian fed slaughter for the week ending February 2nd totaled 31,542 head. Canadian fed cattle exports to the US for the week ending January 26th were 41% larger than the previous week.

Feeder steers averaged $0.79 higher than the previous week and heifer prices strengthened $1.62. The Western Canadian feeder index firmed to 132.99. Alberta auction volumes last week of 23,500 head were steady with the previous week. Canadian feeder exports to the US for the week ending January 26th were 3,565 head.

D1, D2 cow prices slide $0.35 lower last week to average $72.56/cwt. Rail bids held steady ranging from $140.00-145.00 delivered. Butcher bulls averaged $78.00/cwt, up almost $1.00/cwt. Canadian non-fed exports to the US for the week ending January 26th totaled 7,572 head.

Bull factors

  • Market ready supplies should continue tight

  • Corn prices were pressured lower on increased UDSA ending stocks

  • Fed cattle are performing well in response to decent feeding conditions

Bear factors

  • Retail beef is being discounted on stagnant demand

  • Packers are unable to maintain cutout values

  • Packer inventories are long

For more detailed information on markets this week please visit the Canfax website www.canfax.ca.



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