The first week of November brought relatively steady markets, according to the latest data from the Sterling Beef Profit Tracker. Feedlot margins, which have triple-digit swings in 2014, were mostly steady the week ending November 8, increasing just $0.60 to $209.84 per head. While feedlot margins are lower than they were one month ago when feedlots were earning about $227 per head, margins are significantly higher than time last year when they stood at $72.51 per head.

Similarly, fed cattle were mostly steady last week at $167.13 per hundredweight. At this time last month, fed cattle were bringing just shy of $164, but at this time last year, fed prices averaged $131 per hundredweight. Feeders weighing between 750 and 800 pounds increased last week to $239.20, up from $236 the previous week and $165.88 at this time last year. Feed costs were down week-over-week at $300.84 per head compared to $306.38 the previous week.

John Nalivka with Sterling Marketing, Inc., once again updated projected cow-calf margins, increasing projected 2015 margins to $743.

Packer margins improved last week to negative $75.31, compared to negative $83.85 the previous week. At this time last month, packers were losing $40 per head and $30 per head at this time last year.  The beef cutout value last week was $347.36 per hundredweight, compared to $248.51 the previous week and $200 at this time last year.

Farrow-to-finish margins were up almost $2 per head the week ending November 7, according to the Sterling Pork Profit Tracker. Margins averaged $29.04 last week, compared to $27.34 the previous week and negative $12.63 at this time last year.

Lean hogs were down $0.80 last week, averaging $88.09 per hundredweight, compared to $88.90 the previous week and $83.25 at this time last year. Feed costs were lower last week at $76.07 per head compared to $77.28 the previous week and $85.85 last year at this time.

Pork packer margins also dropped, averaging $9.58 per head last week compared to $13.52 the previous week. The pork cutout value finished the week at $95.91 per hundredweight, compared to $98.51 the previous week.

The Sterling Beef Profit Tracker for the week ending November 8:

·         Average feeder margins: $209.84 per head.

·         Average beef packer margins: -$75.31 per head.

The Sterling Pork Profit Tracker for the week ending November7:

·         Average farrow-to-finish margins: $29.04 per head.

·         Average pork packer margins: $9.58per 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, and PorkNetwork.