U.N. population growth analysis

Based on the most recent update, the world population in 2010 was 6.916 billion. This is below the number forecast for 2010 in 1994 of 7.032 billion but more than the 6.826 billion projected in 2000. FULL STORY »

July sees soft fed market

July proved a tough month for participants in “Monday Market Sentiment” (MMS). FULL STORY »

Yearlings strengthen into summer

All classes of stocker and feeder cattle posted gains during July, with the greatest demand for heavy yearlings. FULL STORY »

U.S. cattle inventory still declining

The U.S. cattle herd remains in the contraction phase of the long-term cycle. The cattle cycle normally lasts about 10 years from trough to trough. FULL STORY »

Indicators point to improvement

Eight key economic indicators suggest the cattle and beef industries are headed for better days ahead FULL STORY »

World population becoming more urbanized

By 2050, the world population is expected to increase by 2.3 billion to 9.3 billion, according to the United Nations Population Division. But the size of the rural population is forecast to decline over the next 40 years as the world’s population becomes more urban. By 2050, the number of people living in urban areas is projected to reach 2011, about 150 countries or areas had fewer than 5 million people in urban areas. By 2030, the number of countries or areas in this category will fall to around 115. FULL STORY »

Female markets stumble toward summer

After an April market that saw female prices surge higher, May prices faltered with the uncertainties of soft beef demand and a declining fed-cattle market. Open-female prices were $4 to $6 per hundredweight lower during May, except for aged, open cows, which found bids mostly steady with April. Heiferettes saw averages decrease $4 per hundredweight, while young and middle-aged open cows were $6 per hundredweight lower. Bred females provided May’s largest price declines, with bred heifers trading $303 per head lower. Young and middle-aged bred cows saw bids average $73 per head lower. Aged, bred cows dropped $55 per head. Prices paid for cow-calf pairs were softer across the board. Cows and small calves posted a $35-per-pair loss, and cows with large calves found bids down $124 per pair. Small or aged cows with calves were $30 per pair lower. Slaughter cow averages were steady to slightly lower during May. Utility and commercial cows averaged 42 cents per hundredweight lower. Canner and cutter cows sold for an average of 27 cents lower. FULL STORY »

Test your market skills with the best

Think you know the fed-cattle market? Try matching your skills against some of the best Feed yard managers in America. Each week Cattle Trader Center (, sponsored by Merck Animal Health, solicits entries for “Monday Market Sentiment,” a con test conducted online where participants are asked to pick the weekly market price for fed cattle. The entry closest to USDA’s weekly 5-area weighted reported fed-cattle price wins a $100 Cabela’s gift card. Contest entries typically fall relatively close to USDA’s reported weekly price. The chart below shows contest entry prices compared to actual USDA-reported prices for the 11 weeks from April 5 to June 14. The contest entries average just 47 cents per hundredweight higher than the actual USDA 5-area weighted price for the week. FULL STORY »

Stocker and feeder cattle lower

All classes of stocker and feeder cattle posted declines during May, according to Drovers / CattleNetwork’s 50-market auction summary. Prices were $20 to $25 per hundredweight below last year. Steer calves weighing 400 to 500 pounds posted an average loss of $8.87 per hundredweight for the month at $156.07. Yearling steers averaged $136.11 in May, a $2.07 decline from April. Heifer calves sold for an average of $137.01 in May, a decrease of $6.62 per hundredweight. Yearling heifers weighing more than 600 pounds saw average bids of $120.14 per undredweight, a decline of $2.99 from the prior month. FULL STORY »

Japan again top export market

Market access issues and an oversupply of domestic product in key markets kept U.S. beef exports at sluggish levels during April. However, the U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF) says several of America’s leading trading partners showed positive signs in April. With exports up sharply in April, Japan regained its position as the top market for U.S. beef, the first time in that spot since 2003. At the same time, Hong Kong maintained its rapid growth pace, and Taiwan continued its rebound from beta agonist-related issues that slowed exports last year. FULL STORY »

Cattle markets prices, profit margins lower

Cattle prices continue to disappoint both ranchers and feedyards. Demand for yearling feeder cattle held firm through late May and early June, but calf prices declined 5 percent. Average prices are $20 per hundredweight lower than last year. FULL STORY »

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