Back in the days of the old West, the Pony Express saw fleet-footed horses and their daring riders charging west through hostile territory to get mail through to its destinations. Now the ponies are pointed east and aimed to charge into hostile territory to deliver a petition to the government.
With the recession diminishing in the memories of the country, and people dissatisfied with waiting any longer to invest, the land market in the intermountain region has decidedly picked up. There is optimism and buyer interest with some looking to invest and others looking to expand.
The second week of October looked an awful lot like the first week in terms of the cattle markets. Cash was slow to start with expectations putting it at higher money, futures continued upwards, feeders sold for more money, and the beef complex gained some ground while still leaving packers in the red.
“Prior to the recession, the recreational properties were the focus of the markets. And then when the recession hit, those properties became very stagnant, very difficult to sell. But they have slowly started coming back,” reported Sam Middleton of Chas.
Packers missed the boat last week for buying cattle cheaper. After an explosive rally that began the prior Friday, the relatively aggressive gains of the near-term futures contracts left behind any hope that packers might have allayed their significant losses on the procurement side.
Everything was slow or a bit low last week. Next to no cash trade had occurred by Thursday—3,380 head were confirmed sold for the week at that point at $153 live and $242 dressed—and the cutout was sharply lower as packers struggled with negative margins and slack demand.