The Canfax average steer and heifer price closed the week at $106.50/cwt, mostly steady with the previous week. Light cash trade was reported last week with only one major Alberta packer bidding on fed cattle. US packer interest was supportive with inquiries reported from four major packers. The majority of local cattle trading to the US were being priced on the five area average. Accumulated sales volumes last week totaled 13,700; moderate to large carryover volume will be added to next week’s showlist. Last week’s cash to futures basis weakened, closing the week at -15.40. Fed exports to the US for the week ending September 22nd totaled 9,460.

An unseasonal retraction in auction volumes was realized as the E. coli media hype had some ranchers canceling sale listings. The Canfax average steer and heifer prices closed the week $2.57 lower. 700-900 lb feeders traded generally $3.00-5.00 lower than the previous week while steer and heifer calves eased $1.00-2.00/cwt. The Western Canadian feeder index closed the week at $133.40/cwt, down $2.50. Reported Alberta auction volumes totaled 18,500, 36% lower than the previous week. Feeder exports for the week ending September 22nd totaled 423.

The temporary closure of Lakeside Packers has severely impacted the non-fed market. D1, D2 cows closed the week generally $5.50/cwt lower with live trade reported $58.00-68.00/cwt. D3 cows averaged $56.50/cwt, down $6.50 from the previous week. Butcher bulls averaged $77.75/cwt with live trade reported from $70.00-85.00/cwt. Non-fed exports for the week ending September 22nd totaled 5,083.

Bull factors

  • A recent surge in North American beef exports was reported

  • Canadian fed and non-fed exports are increasing

  • Weekly box beef load counts increased from the previous week

Bear factors

  • Feedlot inventories are becoming less current

  • Cash to futures basis remains weaker than the historical 3 and 5 year averages

  • Western Canadian non-fed values have lost $0.15/lb over the past 3 weeks

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