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July Cattle on Feed Report seen as bearish by some


News Staff - August 25, 2020

WASHNGTON, DC - The USDA July Cattle on Feed Report shows placements of cattle into feedlots during July 2020 were 1.893 million head, 11% more than in July 2019. That is larger than what most analysts were expecting heading into the report. Hot dry weather in much of the country pushed cattle to the feedyards in July, possibly lightening the number of cattle to come this fall.

With feedlots needing cattle that can be turned around in a short amount of time, most of those placements weighed 700-900 pounds. Marking of those cattle will be this winter through early spring.

There is little damage to the current market from what is seen as a bearish COF report. But any heavy placements now will impact market conditions next year.

Overall, the July cattle inventory report does not show any dramatic changes in the trajectory of the cattle industry at this point in the year. The COVID-19-induced backlog of cattle does make interpreting the numbers in this report a bit more challenging.

As of July 1, all cattle and calves in the U.S. totaled 103 million head, slightly above the 102.9 million head reported for July 1, 2019. Of that inventory, all cows and heifers that have calved totaled 41.1 million head. Beef cows dropped slightly from last year, coming in at 32.05 million head compared to 32.3 million head in 2019, while milk cows were up by 50,000 head over 2019.

Both steers and heifers weighing 500 pounds and over were up from 2019, with heifers increasing by 100,000 head and steers increasing by 300,000 head.

These numbers indicate that the beef heard is still contracting and, based on placements noted in the report, likely will not expand any time soon

By weight, placements of cattle weighing less than 600 pounds were 420,000 head, 600 to 699 pound placements were 315,000 head, and placements of cattle weighing 700 to 799 pounds were 435,000 head, while 800 to 899 pound placements were 458,000 head, 900 to 999 pound placements were 195,000 head, and placements of cattle weighing more than 1,000 pounds were 70,000 head.

Marketings during July were 1.990  million head, 1% below a year ago, while the total number of cattle on feed on August 1st was 11.284 million head, 2% above the year before, and the highest inventory for the month since the series of reports started in 1996.

Iowa: Cattle on feed: 620,000 head, down 2% from August 1st, 2019; Placements: 63,000 head, up 3% from a year ago; Marketings: 70,000 head, down 9% from last year

Minnesota: Cattle on feed: 120,000 head, up 9% from August 1st, 2019; Placements: 11,000 head, unchanged from a year ago; Marketings: 15,000 head, down 40% from last year

Nebraska: Cattle on feed: 2.22 million head, up 1% from August 1st, 2019; Placements: 470,000 head, up 18% from a year ago; Marketings: 500,000 head, up 2% from last year

Texas: Cattle and calves on feed for slaughter market in Texas feedlots with capacity of 1,000 head or more totaled 2.92 million head on July 1, 2020, up 3 percent from a year ago. Producers placed 440 thousand head in commercial feedlots during June, up 10 percent from a year ago. Texas commercial feeders marketed 440 thousand head during June, up 5 percent from 2019.

Oklahoma: Cattle and calves on feed for slaughter market in Oklahoma feedlots with capacity of 1,000 head or more totaled 315 thousand head on July 1, 2020, down 2 percent from a year ago. Producers placed 55 thousand head in commercial feedlots during June, down 11 percent from a year ago. Oklahoma commercial feeders marketed 54 thousand head during June, down 4 percent from 2019. Other disappearance during June totaled 1 thousand head, unchanged from a year ago.



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