Market is rough in MS!

Discuss upcoming sales and sale results.
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Re: Market is rough in MS!

Post by bird dog » Thu Oct 10, 2019 9:34 pm

"Get with your neighbor, put a group together, and cut the sharks out."

You haven't seen my neighbors cattle. They have no desire to improve their sorry calves or their sorry pasture. Granted its tough when it hasn't rained in 60 days. There are good commingled weaned calf sales where small timers can do pretty good but very few want to put in the effort to do so.

Its hard to fathom how cheap some animals are selling for at the sale barn today. Dairy steers are a quarter a pound. Some junk calves can hardly get a bid. If you want an animal for the freezer, you can buy some secondary big calves or cripples for less than you would spend at Del Friscos for one meal for you and the wife. Fence has got the right idea. Problem is I don't want to spend my time on a tractor or make the investment for the equipment.



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Re: Market is rough in MS!

Post by Bigfoot » Thu Oct 10, 2019 11:36 pm

I've been in the game since the early 70's. I don't remember getting over $100 cwt for weaned calves, until recent history. It also wasn't that long ago, I could buy a steel fence post (heavier than whats made today), for $1. That post cost $5 today. All of my inputs have risen accordingly. Feed hasn't gone up too terribly much, but neither have commodities. I also used to feed a lot of shelled corn.

I also used to background a bunch of cattle. Years ago, there wasn't that much risk in backgrounding. They might drop $10 cwt over a 3-4 month period, but that was about as bad as it got. There has been some serious volatility in the market over the last 5-6 years. You could absolutely lose your hind end in a very short amount of time.

I actually prefer backgrounding to cow/calf. Do two big groups a year. Not nearly as much hay to have to fool with. Drought catches ya, and your not under the pressure to "save the herd", and throw a bunch of money down a dry hole. Also, back when cattle were larger framed, you got more groth on grass, than with this stuff were raising now. I'm not holding up a breed, but a group of charlois cross calves, used to flat grow some frame on grass/hay and a few pounds of feed a day. All these 1000-1100 pound cows bred to low birth weight bulls.........Give me a break, they're calves are just not gonna grow that much in 120 days. When you was buying 400 pound calves for .80, and selling 700 pound calves for .70.......You could make some money.
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Re: Market is rough in MS!

Post by sstterry » Fri Oct 11, 2019 3:36 am

Kenny Thomas and I had an exchange about Corbit Wall speaking in our area. (He actually had two speaking engagements within an hour drive of me this week). Kenny says that Wall believes that things are about to get better. Just take that for what it is worth.

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Re: Market is rough in MS!

Post by snoopdog » Fri Oct 11, 2019 4:56 am

sim.-ang.king wrote:
Thu Oct 10, 2019 9:13 pm
October is traditionally the worst time of year to sell. Hold them till spring, or buy cattle now.
I agree, if you mean weanlings. Weather and temp fluctuation adds a lot of risk to the buyer.
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Re: Market is rough in MS!

Post by Bright Raven » Fri Oct 11, 2019 7:12 am

Bigfoot wrote:
Thu Oct 10, 2019 11:36 pm

1. It also wasn't that long ago, I could buy a steel fence post (heavier than whats made today), for $1. That post cost $5 today. All of my inputs have risen accordingly. Feed hasn't gone up too terribly much, but neither have commodities. I also used to feed a lot of shelled corn.

2. Also, back when cattle were larger framed, you got more groth on grass, than with this stuff were raising now. I'm not holding up a breed, but a group of charlois cross calves, used to flat grow some frame on grass/hay and a few pounds of feed a day. All these 1000-1100 pound cows bred to low birth weight bulls.........Give me a break, they're calves are just not gonna grow that much in 120 days. When you was buying 400 pound calves for .80, and selling 700 pound calves for .70.......You could make some money.
1. Time value of money covers a lot of tracks. The human mind is easily persuaded that all is well if we are still receiving the same amount in "face value" for our goods and services. What a cattle producer receives for his goods has been frozen in time on a "face value" basis. But the value on a "buying power" basis has been decimated. When I was working on my rotary cutter this summer (Bushhog Brand), the castle nut that holds the stump jumper on was $29.00. I thought I had been in a hold up and robbed. If cattle prices were as inflated as that, we would be getting 500/cwt for feeders.

2. The seedstock industry frowns on too much frame. I know an old buyer who worked for years at Flemingsburg who still likes what he calls "having some leg under them". He is the brother in law to my next door neighbor. He has told me a couple times that he likes my cattle but that they are too fleshy and need some leg under them. I keep telling him that I don't raise them for sale buyers. Lol
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Re: Market is rough in MS!

Post by JParrott » Fri Oct 11, 2019 7:22 am

sim.-ang.king wrote:
Thu Oct 10, 2019 9:13 pm
October is traditionally the worst time of year to sell. Hold them till spring, or buy cattle now.
Yep, I thought this was common knowledge? Fall has the lowest prices due to large supply low demand and Spring has the highest due to low supply and high demand.

That aside, we'll sell ours next month or the beginning of December. Moving to fall calving over the next few years to switch to spring sales.

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Re: Market is rough in MS!

Post by Stocker Steve » Fri Oct 11, 2019 7:31 am

JParrott wrote:
Fri Oct 11, 2019 7:22 am
sim.-ang.king wrote:
Thu Oct 10, 2019 9:13 pm
October is traditionally the worst time of year to sell. Hold them till spring, or buy cattle now.
Yep, I thought this was common knowledge? Fall has the lowest prices due to large supply low demand and Spring has the highest due to low supply and high demand.
Costs alot to winter calves in the north. Not practical for many to hold them.
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Re: Market is rough in MS!

Post by Dave » Fri Oct 11, 2019 8:33 am

There is always opportunity in the market. Right now a person can buy good young cows cheap that will be producing when the market swings up in a year or two. Also back grounding light calves. The price spread is the key to that type of operation. Every area has an unfair advantage. Figure out what the unfair advantage is in your area and capitalize on it.

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Re: Market is rough in MS!

Post by skyhightree1 » Fri Oct 11, 2019 12:44 pm

Stocker Steve wrote:
Fri Oct 11, 2019 7:31 am
JParrott wrote:
Fri Oct 11, 2019 7:22 am
sim.-ang.king wrote:
Thu Oct 10, 2019 9:13 pm
October is traditionally the worst time of year to sell. Hold them till spring, or buy cattle now.
Yep, I thought this was common knowledge? Fall has the lowest prices due to large supply low demand and Spring has the highest due to low supply and high demand.
Costs alot to winter calves in the north. Not practical for many to hold them.
Ive never liked wintering calves
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Re: Market is rough in MS!

Post by skyhightree1 » Fri Oct 11, 2019 12:47 pm

Dave wrote:
Fri Oct 11, 2019 8:33 am
There is always opportunity in the market. Right now a person can buy good young cows cheap that will be producing when the market swings up in a year or two. Also back grounding light calves. The price spread is the key to that type of operation. Every area has an unfair advantage. Figure out what the unfair advantage is in your area and capitalize on it.
Bottle calves are $5.00-10.00 a head here so I have been thinking about getting maybe 50 and fooling with them. I have the hay grain and time milk replacer will be about 2 bags per calf but I can probably come out ahead on them. They have been selling nice pairs for 675 bucks usually. If I wanted to buy back in cheap that would be the way to go.
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Re: Market is rough in MS!

Post by HDRider » Fri Oct 11, 2019 1:25 pm

Bright Raven wrote:
Thu Oct 10, 2019 10:19 am
It is going to improve or it is going to become an extinct vocation. It just can not stay like this.
Take a look in your crystal ball and give us a prediction. You been around, and you are a thinking man. Where do you see this going over the next 10 years.

I say we will have some doing it for lifestyle/tax reasons, and then some really big producers, (and even those might just be ways to wash money), and then we will have imports from countries that can produce at a fraction of US costs.

The big unknown to me is fake meat.
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Re: Market is rough in MS!

Post by HDRider » Fri Oct 11, 2019 1:29 pm

snoopdog wrote:
Thu Oct 10, 2019 8:16 pm
The future , for the small guy, is to gather as producers and offer potloads of like cattle. 52000lbs will sell better than 1 or 2 at a time, fill the orders , with less effort. Get with your neighbor, put a group together, and cut the sharks out.
You'd do better trying to rope rabbits here. People just will not work together.
bball wrote: "The juice wasn't worth the squeeze."
Dun said, "You gotta be flexible. Do whatever you have to do for the best results within your limitations."

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Re: Market is rough in MS!

Post by Bright Raven » Fri Oct 11, 2019 2:47 pm

HDRider wrote:
Fri Oct 11, 2019 1:25 pm
Bright Raven wrote:
Thu Oct 10, 2019 10:19 am
It is going to improve or it is going to become an extinct vocation. It just can not stay like this.
Take a look in your crystal ball and give us a prediction. You been around, and you are a thinking man. Where do you see this going over the next 10 years.

I say we will have some doing it for lifestyle/tax reasons, and then some really big producers, (and even those might just be ways to wash money), and then we will have imports from countries that can produce at a fraction of US costs.

The big unknown to me is fake meat.
I will address "fake meat" first. On a much longer term basis than 10 years, the human population will depend on the synthesis and formulation of foods. You can call it fake if you want but it will be the way of the future. It would be a discredit to the capabilities of the human race to think that they cannot produce a product that will be superior to whole animal products. Driving this science and technology will be economics and the need to feed a world population. What we see today in terms of "fake meat" is tantamount to mankind picking up the first stone and using it as a projectile.

In regard to the market, I think there will be at least a couple more rallies. As I mentioned, in terms of the real value of money, the high tide has gone out. It might be wise to cash in on the next rally.

One last point, like every major industry in America during my lifetime, it has been forced off these shores because the standard of living in other parts of the world allow them to produce a cheaper product than we can here. That will happen with beef. Capitalism is ruthless and without a conscience. Money is KING, not patriotism, human welfare or old guys who love cows.

PS: Anecdotal. My son was a protein specialist at the University of Louisville Medical School before he went to Vanderbilt to get his PhD in molecular biology. He knows how organic compounds are synthesized. His biggest investments are in companies that are working on synthesis and formulation of foods.
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Re: Market is rough in MS!

Post by Stocker Steve » Fri Oct 11, 2019 3:10 pm

We have made large recent "sales" of pork to the Chinks. Mostly for delivery next year. I assume they will cancel these orders if Trump does not cave on a partial trade agreement... Meanwhile back in overfly country - - we are not exporting enough beef to support the hobby rancher lifestyle.

So most of the predictions are not so promising:
1) export more beef
2) sell cows & restock pastures with deer and hogs
3) plant trees
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Re: Market is rough in MS!

Post by bball » Fri Oct 11, 2019 3:39 pm

Stocker Steve wrote:
Fri Oct 11, 2019 3:10 pm
We have made large recent "sales" of pork to the Chinks. Mostly for delivery next year. I assume they will cancel these orders if Trump does not cave on a partial trade agreement... Meanwhile back in overfly country - - we are not exporting enough beef to support the hobby rancher lifestyle.

So most of the predictions are not so promising:
1) export more beef
2) sell cows & restock pastures with deer and hogs
3) plant trees

To further support this statement....time to go big or get the h*ll out. Writing is on the wall for the little guy.

Despite that overall 20-year decline, the latest census data on cow operations shows growth in every size category above 50 cows. The category of operations with 50-99 cows increased 11%, the 100-499 cow category increased 13%, the 500-999 cow category increased 7%, and the category of operations with more than 1,000 cows increased 8%.

Those increases in the upper size categories means more of the nation’s beef cows are in larger herds. For instance, the total U.S. beef cow inventory was 31.722 in 2017, and 27% of those cows were in herds under 50 head. Another 19% of the cows were in herds of 50 to 99 cows. Therefore, the breakdown included 46% of the cows were in herds under 100 cows, with 54% of the cows in herds greater than 100 head.


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