Cattle feeders sought higher bids last week, but settled for mostly $2 lower offerings as most commodities and financials were under pressure. The result was a $47 decline in feeding margins that were already written with red ink. Last week average feeding losses exceeded $64 per head, according to the Sterling Beef Profit Tracker.
Beef packer margins inched higher with profits now on top of $9 per head. The Sterling Beef Profit Quotient declined 140 points for the week, according to estimates developed by Sterling Marketing, Inc., Vale, Ore.
Pork producer margins improved more than $7per head, pulling margins above $14 per head. Pork packer margins declined more than $7 per head, pushing losses to more than $12 per head, according to the Sterling Pork Profit Tracker.
Cash fed cattle traded at $120.45 per hundredweight last week, down $2.27, while Western Corn Belt negotiated hog prices increased $0.86 to $85.13 per hundredweight.
A year ago cattle feeders sold cash cattle at $104.04 per hundredweight, resulting in losses of $43.82 per head. Last year cash hogs fetched $90.89 per hundredweight resulting in profits of $18.88 per head.
The Sterling Beef and Pork Profit Trackers are calculated using actual weekly prices for both cattle and hogs, feed costs, beef and pork cutout prices, drop credits and other factors that influence profit margins.
The Sterling Beef Profit Tracker for the week ending May 26:
- Average feedyard margins: -$64.39 per head.
- Average packer margins: $9.41 per head.
- Sterling Profit Quotient: -191.7.
The Sterling Pork Profit Tracker for the week ending May 26:
- Average farrow-to-finish margins: $14.63 per head.
- Average pork packer margins: -$12.55 per head.
The Sterling Beef and Pork Profit Trackers are produced by Sterling Marketing Inc. and John Nalivka, president, Vale, Ore., and are published weekly by Drovers/CattleNetwork.