Cattle Inventory Report Signals Expansion Phase Is Nearing Completion

Posted on 07/20/2018 2:29 PM

Today’s Cattle on Feed and Cattle Inventory Reports came in largely as expected, which will allow the market to quickly shift its focus back to cash market fundamentals.

A focal point of today’s Cattle Inventory report was the beef heifer replacements category. While the figure came in roughly a point higher than expected, USDA’s call for a 2% year-over-year drop in this figure still signals cattle producers are moving more heifers into feedlots. But the bull population topped year-ago by 100,000 head (5%), which may suggest the industry is not fully done expanding.

In any case, it will still be some time before the U.S. herd shrinks under year-ago levels.

 

USDA
(Percent of year-ago)

Average trade estimate
(Percent of year-ago)

All cattle/calves

101

100.7

Cow/heifers that have calved

101

100.8

Beef cows

101

101.4

Dairy cows

100

99.8

Heifers 500 lbs.+

101

100.6

Beef heifer replacements

98

96.7

Dairy heifer replacements

100

99.5

Other heifers

103

103.9

Steers 500 lbs.+

100

100.5

Bulls 500 lbs.+

105

100.0

All calves 500 lbs. and under

102

100.8

2018 calf crop

102

101.5

 

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