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Thursday, April 28,2011

Summer volatility ahead

by Pete Crow - Publisher
Cattle markets were a bit softer last week, but recovered somewhat by the week’s end. We’ve all been wondering when this market would get a bit softer and it looks like we’re starting to see it. We’re approaching the high-demand summer grilling season and slaughter rates should start to pick up and keep the larger cattle inventory moving, barring any

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Friday, April 15,2011

A market to behold

by Pete Crow - Publisher
The bull sales have been awfully good this spring and there is a great deal of optimism in the cow/calf sector of this business. All classes of breeding stock are trading 30 percent higher than a year ago. Many of the bull sales are producing $500 to $800 more per bull than a year ago. Some outfits have seen their bull sale average

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Thursday, April 7,2011

Looking ahead

by Pete Crow - Publisher
Boxed beef may have peaked for a while at $191 two weeks ago; packers lost $5.60 per head on an average buy of $121.29 for last week’s purchases of cattle. Typically, we would see beef production slow down in response to a negative cut out value. However, packers processed an additional 8,000 head last

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Thursday, March 31,2011

Leave some margin

by Pete Crow - Publisher
It’s a perfect world when prices and production go up at the same time and that’s what we’re seeing in the cattle and meat business right now. Year-to-date beef production is up 1.1 percent from a year ago and prices are up some 30 percent. Unfortunately, we’re robbing Peter to pay Paul in this situation because we certainly won’t have enough

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Friday, March 25,2011

Time to grow

by Pete Crow - Publisher
It’s starting to appear that some ranches are thinking about expanding their herds. If individual production sales are any indication of herd expansion, then it’s starting to happen. Our team of field men have been busy attending the sales and most of the road talk isn’t about what someone’s bulls averaged or the

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Friday, March 11,2011

Market signals

by Pete Crow - Publisher
Fed cattle markets have .been trading for over $1 for 13 weeks. Cash fed cattle traded between $117-119 live and $190 in northern Plains dressed trade last week. It’s hard to imagine this market trading much higher, but all the signals point to a higher market this fall. Trading cattle at this level looks

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Thursday, March 3,2011

Ethanol is a problem

by Pete Crow - Publisher
The ethanol business has been a burr under the saddle of livestock producers ever since the government made the decision to pursue biofuels. The corn markets have been good for the farming business, but not livestock feeding. It’s an interesting relationship since many folks raise both. The current spending

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Friday, February 25,2011

It's global

by Pete Crow - Publisher
Fed cattle markets remain extremely good. I’ve lost track of how many weeks fed cattle have traded for over $100. The market has been so good that it has a lot of folks perplexed. The cash market traded at $109-$110 two weeks ago and was expected to trade a couple dollars higher last

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Friday, February 18,2011

It’s good enough

by Pete Crow - Publisher
Looking ahead, we have August feeder cattle futures showing us $133.45 last Thursday, a new contract high. Fall cattle prices are as strong as ever and it forces me to ask the question: How many ranchers will sell in the fall on the cash market? I still contend that there are more reasons for the market to go down

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Friday, February 11,2011

They belong together

by Pete Crow - Publisher
The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, Cattlemen’s Beef Board, and the Federation of State Beef Councils held their annual meetings in Denver, CO, in early February. There was a good crowd despite sub-zero temperatures. For the most part, everyone was in good spirits due to the current cattle markets, but caution was the word

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