Cash cattle surged higher late last week, gaining $4.20. A survey of cattle-industry leaders suggests the average price for cash cattle will remain steady and continue to build on last week’s gains. A survey of industry professionals predicts cash cattle to increase by 13 cents to $117.70 per cwt.

The Monday Market Sentiment is a forecast of the upcoming weekly cash trade (5-Area weighted average price) prices reported by the USDA. Cash cattle prices improved last week by $4.20 per cwt with a surge in trading on Friday.  Beef prices moved higher Monday, justifying cash cattle gains and spurring future cattle markets to move higher. 

The beef export market has been a key driver in high beef prices, but a rebounding economy and stronger dollar may inhibit the beef market. Cattle slaughter remains high as the drought moved cattle out of feedlots earlier than usual.

Each week the Cattle Trader Center, on behalf of Vance Publishing, awards a $100 gift certificate from Cabela's to the industry leader whose forecast comes closest to the 5-Area cash trade number reported by the USDA. The most recent winner was Joe Kovanda, Bartlett Cattle Company.