Few Surprises in Today’s Cattle on Feed Report

Posted on 06/21/2019 3:04 PM

Analysts surveyed by Reuters did a pretty good job anticipating what today’s Cattle on Feed Report would show. USDA reported there were 11.740 million head of cattle on feed as of June 1, a 1.6% gain from year-ago and just 27,000 head higher than the average trade guess implied. Analysts were also nearly spot on with marketings, with USDA reporting a 0.7% increase in sales last month versus year-ago, whereas analysts forecast a 0.8% rise.

Placements also dropped 2.8% from year-ago amid high feed costs, which was a smaller decline than anticipated. Large feedlot operators were a bit more active placing young animals into their lots than anticipated, which could put a bit of pressure on deferred live cattle contracts Monday morning. But overall, we expect reaction to today’s report to be pretty minimal.


(% of year-ago)

Avg. Trade Estimate

(% of year-ago)

On Feed on June 1



Placements in May



Marketings in May




The breakdown of placements by weight category showed lightweight categories down versus year-ago levels during May, but steady to higher numbers for mid- and heavier weight categories. Lightweights were down 16.9% from year-ago and six-weights fell 10.3%. But seven-weights, eight-weights and heavyweights were up 4.2%, 2.9%, and 15%, respectively, versus year-ago. Nine-weights were steady with year-ago.


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