A bearish tone persisted throughout the beef market chain again last week. Initial light live sales Wednesday saw a handful of cattle trade $0.75/cwt lower than the previous week. Light to moderate live trade continued on Thursday at prices $1.50 lower than the previous week and light dressed sales were somewhat mixed trading from steady to over $3.00/cwt lower. The majority of last week’s trade was however mostly steady and weighted average prices finished the week off $0.25/cwt lower than the previous week. Sale volumes of 12,144 head were 1% smaller than the previous week. The Alberta cash to futures basis widened to -13.00 last week. Western Canadian fed slaughter for the week ending February 16th was up 7% from the previous week and Canadian fed cattle exports to the US for the week ending February 9th were 7% larger.
Average feeder prices slipped almost $1.00 lower than the previous week and reported auction volumes totaled 24,710. The Western Canadian feeder index last week was the lowest index value since August 2011. Canadian feeder exports to the US for the week ending February 9th totaled 25% larger than the previous week.
Last week butcher cows traded fully steady on a live basis while rail bids were reported $1.00/cwt stronger. Butcher bull prices surged $1.50/cwt higher to average $82.67. Canadian non-fed exports to the US for the week ending February 9th were up 4% from the previous week.
US and Canadian currencies are conducive to exports
Cattle futures are poised to rebound
USDA on feed report is moderately bullish
Beef marketing chain lacks momentum
North American economy appears to be relapsing
Lots of negative beef headlines currently getting airtime
For more detailed information on markets this week please visit the Canfax website www.canfax.ca.