Sale volumes were too light to establish a weighted average fed price, but the market tone was steady. Dressed sales and bids were marked at $390/cwt delivered. Light volumes of Western Canadian fed cattle were marketed into the U.S. These cattle were committed to the U.S. packer on a formula price. Last week the Alberta cash-to-futures basis was estimated at -$20.75/cwt; basis levels are weaker than the five-year average. Western Canadian steer carcass weights have been flat over the past month, averaging on either side of 960 lb. For the month of October this will be the second largest carcass weigh on record.
The Canfax average feeder steer price was $2.50/cwt higher, while heifer prices strengthened $1/cwt. Alberta 850 lb feeders traded $2-4/cwt higher last week. Week over week, the largest price declines were noted on the lightweight calves from 3-400 lbs, with prices $4-10/cwt softer. Light weight steer and heifer calves are at the lowest point since late August-early September. The Western Canadian feeder index closed the week $336/cwt, $6/cwt higher. Alberta auction volumes totaled just over 87,000 head, 13,000 head smaller than the same week last year. Canadian feeder cattle exports to the U.S. for the week ending October 21st totaled 6,171 head. For the first three week in October (week ending October 7th to 21st), Canadian feeder exports are the largest since 2014.
Alberta D2 cows traded $1-2/cwt higher and live trade was reported from $125‑150/cwt. D3 cows averaged $123.50/cwt. Alberta cow prices have gained $7.25/cwt over the past month. Last week, butcher bulls traded $0.50/cwt higher, averaging $154.50/cwt, with a trading range from $140‑175/cwt. Butcher bull prices are $30/cwt higher than last week. Canadian butcher bull exports to the U.S. for the week ending October 21st totaled 651 head, 42% lower than the same week last year.
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