Beef Buzz News
LMIC's Katelyn McCullock Projects Better Returns For Cattle Feeders Later This Year
Wed, 19 Aug 2020 08:18:35 CDT
Katelyn McCullock, director and senior agricultural economist for the Livestock Marketing Information Center, sees a ray of hope on the cattle market horizon.
Ron Hays Beef Buzzes With Katelyn McCullock
Starting with the backlog of cattle waiting to be processed which some estimated to be around one million head, she noted progress is being made in whittling down the number.
I think probably it wasn't as big as we initially thought, she said. We're still looking at marketing rates below a year ago for July.
We were wondering for a long time when we would get to 90 percent of a year ago on the slaughter levels and we were above 95 percent for July, she said.
I think the fed cattle prices indicate (backlog) is not that large, McCullock said.
Her group estimates cash cattle returns are showing a lot of red ink this summer.
When we look at our model for July, we estimate the return to be a negative $200 a head for cattle marketed in July, she said.
She said they are expecting August to be a little worse and September to be near zero as they project returns to be much better in the fourth quarter of the year.
That's all very promising for those in the cattle feeding businesses, she said.
McCullock noted there does not appear to be any significant beef cow herd liquidation right now.
A lot of producers are in a wait and see mode, she said.
As we look to the dairy cow herd, they have had a roller coaster of a year and that is expected to continue, she said.
McCullock added there is still a lot of questions surrounding the pandemic's impact and will contribute to the volatility of dairy prices especially cheese and butter.
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