The beef industry has started off Y2K with a full head of steam. Drovers' index of economic indicators showed one down arrow, three up arrows and four sideways arrows. The only down arrow this month is due to falling feeder margins. Though lower this month, a $17 profit for feeders is far better than this time last year. Production indicators are up from last month due to lower placements and higher marketings. The sideways arrow, on production costs that are still very low, serves simply as a heads up that feed costs have probably bottomed out and will be leaning higher. Auction barns report heavy receipts of stocker and feeder calves yet prices continue to climb. Live and hot prices for fed cattle are down slightly but well above year ago levels. Boxed beef and retail movement remains strong despite seasonal declines.