Semi-annual Cattle Inventory Report expected to reflect ongoing herd contraction

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Following are expectations ahead of Friday’s 2:00 p.m. CT Cattle Inventory Report that are based on a survey of analysts conducted by Urner Barry. Given last year’s pandemic-related disruptions to the cattle herd, the data could receive more market attention than it typically does, with traders likely to take particular note of USDA’s calf crop estimate. On average, analysts expect the calf crop to slip 0.4% to a six-year low of 34.995 million head. All cattle and calves as of July 1 are expected to come in around 101.689 million head, the lowest figure in five years.

Cattle Inventory

Range of Estimates
(Percent of year-ago)

Average Estimate
(Percent of year-ago)

All cattle/calves (July 1)

99.5

99.3-99.7

Cow/heifers that have calved

99.3

98.9-99.6

  Beef cows

98.9

98.3-99.4

  Dairy cows

101.0

100.5-101.7

Heifers 500 lbs.+

99.6

99.4-100.0

Beef heifer replacements

99.0

97.7-100.0

Dairy heifer replacements

100.1

98.8-101.3

Other heifers

99.8

98.7-101.3

Steers 500 lbs.+

99.6

99.3-99.7

Bulls 500 lbs.+

98.8

95.2-100.0

All calves 500 lbs. and under

99.5

99.3-99.6

Calf crop

99.6

99.0-100.5

 

 

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