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February 14, 2022

Canfax Weekly Article | Report for the week of February 14, 2022

The western Canadian fed market has been disappointing on many levels. Weekly dressed sales were reported from $260-275/cwt delivered. Cattle were being scheduled for the week of March 14th delivery. On some sales, a $2/cwt dressed premium would be added to the negotiated sale price if the cattle graded over 70% AAA. Western Canadian steer carcass weights averaged 922 lb, for the beginning of February this is the second largest weight on record. On a cash-to-cash basis Alberta fed prices are trading at an $18+/cwt discount to the Nebraska market. In Ontario, dressed sales were reported at $290/cwt delivered, fully steady with the previous week. Cattle were being booked for February 21st delivery.

Light calves less than 500 lb rallied $4-5/cwt higher than the previous week and middle weight 500-700 lb calves surged $4-8/cwt higher on improved feeding margins and early grass interest. Larger feeders over 800 lb were generally $3.50/cwt stronger than the previous week on tightening supplies. Auction volumes eased 16% lower than the previous week but were 51% larger than the same week last year. YTD auction volumes of 156,849 head are 19% and 21% larger than year ago and the five-year historic average respectively. Weekly feeder exports to the U.S. continued to track significantly larger than year ago.

Non-fed prices firmed higher last week on renewed trim demand and reduced offerings. D2 slaughter cow prices were almost $2/cwt higher at auction and D3 prices were $1.20/cwt higher. Dressed cow bids realigned sharply higher with reports from $160-165/cwt delivered. Butcher bull prices traded fully steady with the previous week averaging $103.42/cwt.

Bull.

  • Feed grain is becoming more available, and prices have softened.
  • Strong cattle futures are providing hedging opportunities.
  • Spring beef buying will improve moving forward.

Bear

  • Packers still have ample slaughter inventory to work through.
  • Border protests could be preventing U.S. buying interest in Canadian fed cattle.
  • Fed basis levels are seasonally very weak.

For over 50 years, Canfax has provided expert analysis of markets and trends in the ever changing North American beef industry. In this new millennium, cattlemen, feedlot managers, and agri-business professionals will continue to rely on up-to-the-minute information as an essential tool for maximizing profit in today’s beef sector. Whether your operation needs to plan for three hours or three years into the future, Canfax delivers timely, accurate information for 21st Century cattle industry professionals.

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Livestock Price Insurance Index

Expiry Fed Feeder Calf
20-Feb 192 226 -
20-Mar 194 228 -
17-Apr 200 230 -
15-May 202 238 -
12-Jun 206 248 -
10-Jul 202 - -
7-Aug 202 246 -
Last Updated on November 24, 2022