Where they are or less. The only way I see them doing better is the loss of cattle to the horrible fires will make some demand, probably more breds than smaller ones.
All the buyers here are saying that cattle are going to start dropping as people have been buying early to use some of the extra hay, and that since temps are warmer than normal, people are getting antsy for grass cattle. Thing that is worrisome here, is if we don't start getting some decent "normal" moisture, we will be in trouble this summer. Not only for pastures, but for hay. I see some prices are doing a bit better west and south of here.
Will probably be going to Staunton, Va on friday, may take a load of some smaller ( 4-5 wt ) heifers. Not our best, but they have been in the barn for 30+ days and need to go. Want to cull pretty heavy this year on young stuff. Just found out we are losing a 100 acre pasture, split up and bulk of it sold. So will have to make a few adjustments.
Conventional wisdom was you worked off future prices, since they (used to be) right more than 50% of the time.
Now days computerized momentum trading drives the lows lower and the highs higher - - so you are supposed to do some statistical analysis of the of the longs and the shorts in the futures markets. :?
Seasoned stocker operators are not computer geeks -- so they just make some money when they buy, and then usually have their calves pre sold by June.
$130-$135 at 650 on a good one sitting in Colorado/Nebraska/Wyoming. In sort of related news, I bought one load on Superior today and one load out of the country today of heifers in the middle 6's delivering May 1st. and thats what they cost($135 on one, $134 on the other). I tried to buy 2 loads of steers weighing 650 on Superior delivering May 1st. too. I quit on them at $153. Good jump from the same cattle a couple weeks ago.
The fat market has certainly got some spring to it's step too. I had 7 loads of Fats (heifers) of mine on a Colorado feedyard show list today get traded at $130. Huge jump from even last week. I've got 4 loads of steers that are ready and on a show list at a different feedyard over in Nebraska, I'm thinking they'll get traded tomorrow. I haven't looked back at them yet but I know those heifers have been on feed since they weighed in the big 6's, they project to go out right at 1,300. In that time, they have had a low point when based on the futures, they lost $250/head and now this highpoint where they are going to profit somewhere around $250/head. Thats a $500/head swing in per head net returns on a set of cattle.
The expert talking heads always cover themselves with multiple scenarios:
- Trump team can not get it done in congress, stock market takes a dump, and heifers go back to a dollar...
- Brazilian beef is in short supply, Japan opens up, and heifers go up to $1.60 !