Beef Market Update: Price lags, sliding off the highs, and the disappearing cow herd

(Kara Oosterhuis/RealAgriculture)

Fat cattle markets in the U.S. headed down this week, at $3-$4 lower in the south, reflecting a larger downward trend since price peaks hit in September, says Anne Wasko in this week’s edition of the Beef Market Update.

Western Canadian action was pretty quiet this week, with not a pile of volume in terms of the cash trade. What did move was on a lower trend week over week, she says.

There are some signals of demand struggles, Wasko adds, if you tally up the bearish cattle-on-feed report released in October and disappointing numbers on the cut out.

Retail prices work their way in to cattle prices, too, but always on a lag. Retail prices were sky-high in August, but have since really pulled back (see below). Sustained high prices, especially in the face of really low pork prices, could have turned more than a few consumers off beef purchases, at least for now.

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Source: StatsCan


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