Northern cattle and calf

Well here we are again, just when we thought the Eastern Young Cattle Indicator couldn’t go any higher, it’s jumped up by a 40 cents or 3.6% on last week, to a new record high of 1147¢/kg cwt. The EYCI is remarkably 45% higher than the same time last year.

Taking a look at the top saleyards contributing to the Eastern States Young Cattle Indicator (EYCI), again it was the Roma store sales contributing the most head of cattle (16%) and at the highest average price too, at 1262¢/kg cwt.  Dalby and Wagga were the next highest contributors at 15 & 12% respectively and average cattle prices were 1193¢/kg cwt in Dalby and 1121¢/kg cwt in Wagga.

Over in the west, the Western Young Cattle Indicator (WYCI) fell 13 cents on last week and is now at 1143¢/kg cwt, with just over 1,200 head the total 7-day rolling average on offer there.

Looking at the National Indicators and they have all lifted on the week prior, bar the Medium Steer indicator which lost 17¢ and is now at 488¢/kg lwt.  Restocker Yearling Steers ruled the market again, up 16¢ (2.2%) on last week to settle at 744¢/kg lwt. The Feeder & Processor Steers both lifted by 12¢ to finish this week at 574 & 544¢/kg lwt respectively. While the Vealer & Heavy Steers lifted both lifted by 1¢.

Supply continues to shrink as east coast yardings dropped by 32% for the week ending 3rd of December 2021, with just 28,118 head of cattle yarded, a 37% drop on this time last year, perhaps in part explaining the upward pressure on cattle prices lately.

Slaughter levels for the east coast were down 7% last week with 86,772 cattle were processed. For the same week in 2020 there were 115,048 head of cattle slaughtered, or 25% more, showing again how tight supply is at the moment.

The 90CL price in AUD terms keeps on climbing, on the back of a lift in the AUD up 2.1% on the week prior to 0.715US. The 90CL price jumped up 24¢ to 898¢/kg swt in AUD terms. It’s not the highest we’ve ever seen the  the 90CL price. The high of 972.5¢/kg swt was hit at the end of November, 2019.

The week ahead….

This weeks yardings and slaughter figures may lift on last weeks but it’s hard to see any significant ramp up in supply and therefore any easing of pressure on cattle prices in the short term. With plenty of rain about and grass in the paddocks, restocker demand is strong, especially in the north , and if this continues it will continue to put pressure on prices in the near future.

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Data sources: MLA, Mecardo, NRLS, BOM

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