If Analysts Have it Right, USDA's March On Feed Report May Show First Inventory Decline in YearsThu, 21 Mar 2019 15:16:11 CDT
On Friday afternoon, the US Department of Agriculture will release its March 1 Cattle on Feed report and finally catch up from the reporting delays incurred earlier in the year by the partial government shutdown. Ahead of this report, Jim Robb of the Livestock Marketing Information Center sat down with Radio Oklahoma Ag Network Farm Director Ron Hays to offer his pre-report expectations. According to him, it is likely this report, like it has the past several months, show a dichotomy in the numbers between placements of cattle from the Southern Plains compared to the northern part of cattle country.
“We think the Southern Plains have likely had more cattle placed into feedyards that a year ago. But, Kansas, Nebraska, Iowa probably have - because of the muddy lots - below a year ago,” Robb predicted. “So, on balance, our expectation is placements way down by 2 - 3 percent year-over-year. Not a huge decline but building on the declines in recent months going back into late 2018 due to muddy conditions.”
Marketings too, according to Robb, should be slightly down compare to the previous year. Combined, he says this should add up to an on feed count that is roughly at 100 percent of last year’s total at this time - making this the first time in several years the industry has not facilitated a significant year-over-year increase in the number of cattle on feed. However, Robb’s expectations are a bit more optimistic than that of some of his peers. The pre-report estimate currently shows an 8 percent drop from a year ago at 92 percent in terms of placements and puts marketings at 1.3 percent up over year ago levels with an on feed number of 99 percent, down just one point year-over-year for March 1.
“It’s a hard report to call because looking at the contrast between central and south Texas and Kansas placements may be quite difficult,” Robb said. “So, there’s a wide range on the expectations amongst the market analysts, but on balance, we would think these placements are still down due to Mother Nature.”
The USDA March 1 Cattle on Feed report is due for release at 2:00 p.m. CST on Friday, March 22, 2019. In the meantime, listen to Robb and Hays discuss the industry’s pre-report estimates, on today’s Beef Buzz - brought to you by the American Angus Association. America’s breed.
The Beef Buzz is a regular feature heard on radio stations around the region on the Radio Oklahoma Network and is a regular audio feature found on this website as well. Click on the LISTEN BAR below for today's show and check out our archives for older Beef Buzz shows covering the gamut of the beef cattle industry today.
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