Cattle on Feed Report 03/17 14:36
March 1 Cattle on Feed Down 4%
By DTN Staff
USDA Actual Average Estimate Range
On Feed March 1 96% 95.3% 94.2-96.2%
Placed in February 93% 93.1% 90.0-96.9%
Marketed in February 95% 95.7% 95.0-96.0%
This article was originally published at 2:05 p.m. CDT on
Friday, March 17. It was last updated with additional
information at 2:36 p.m. CDT on Friday, March 17.
OMAHA (DTN) -- Cattle and calves on feed for the slaughter
market in the United States for feedlots with capacity of 1,000
or more head totaled 11.6 million head on March 1, 2023. The
inventory was 4% below March 1, 2022, USDA NASS reported on
Placements in feedlots during February totaled 1.73 million
head, 7% below 2022. Net placements were 1.68 million head.
During February, placements of cattle and calves weighing less
than 600 pounds were 345,000 head, 600-699 pounds were 315,000
head, 700-799 pounds were 470,000 head, 800-899 pounds were
424,000 head, 900-999 pounds were 130,000 head, and 1,000 pounds
and greater were 50,000 head.
Marketings of fed cattle during February totaled 1.74 million
head, 5% below 2022. Other disappearance totaled 58,000 head
during February, 2% below 2022.
"After this past week's worth of trade, Friday's Cattle on Feed
report is exactly what traders needed to see," said DTN
Livestock Analyst ShayLe Stewart. "It's likely that traders will
find the report neutral to somewhat bullish as analysts'
projections leading up to the report were spot on, but from a
fundamental standpoint, one cannot argue the tremendous position
this report puts cattle feeders and cow-calf producers in.
"It's not surprising to see Friday's on-feed number come in at
96% when some analysts predicted that the report could be as few
as 94.2%. With marketings not as aggressive as they were the
previous year, which was largely due to reduced slaughter
speeds, there's naturally going to be more cattle on feed than
if processing speeds were still operating like they were in
"What's most interesting and most invigorating and bullish about
Friday's COF report is the placement data. Regardless of what
weight division you look at (calves under 600 pounds, 600-699
weights, 700-799 weights, 800-899 weights, 900-plus weights),
all divisions for cattle placed in February 2023 were lighter
than that of February 2022. When one compares the placements of
January 2023 to those of February 2023, the only two weight
divisions that saw an increase in placements from a month ago
were the 800-to-899 weights, and those weighing 900 to 999
pounds. Friday's placement data clearly tells the industry that
there are starkly fewer cattle to be had.
"All in all, Friday's COF report will likely be found neutral to
somewhat bullish by market participants. The market's
fundamentals are extremely clear -- fewer beef cows in the
market are contributing fewer calves and feeders to be had by
both feedlots and packers. This report could potentially help
Monday's market trade slightly higher."
DTN subscribers can view the full Cattle on Feed reports in the
Livestock Archives folder under the Markets menu. The report is
also available at https://www.nass.usda.gov/.
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