Angus cattle

Dry conditions across much of Australia have seen a continued influx of cattle through selling centres across the country as well as over the hooks. While there are slight positives in certain areas, cattle prices have maintained a downward trajectory, which will require good rainfall across key cattle regions to turn around.

With young cattle supply falling only slightly this week, pricing for young stock continued its downward trajectory. The Eastern Young Cattle Indicator (EYCI) dropped 27¢ to 510¢/kg cwt, a 5.1% decrease week on week and now 51% lower than this time last year. In WA, fewer numbers through saleyards saw the Western Young cattle indicator bounce back increasing from 517¢/kg cwt to 560¢/kg cwt, a jump of 43¢/kg.

The national Feeder cattle indicator saw another slight drop in price coming down 1.2% to 299¢/kg, over the last four weeks we have seen feeder prices fall 22¢/kg (7%). Feeders were down in NSW by 10¢ to 296¢/kg lwt, this is despite a 17% drop in the throughput of feeder spec cattle on last week’s numbers. Wagga Wagga saw an average price of 291¢/kg lwt for feeders and further south to Victoria, feeder indicators averaged out to 272¢/kg/lwt, a 5¢ decline.

The Queensland feeder market saw a 2% increase in the amount of cattle yarded, as feeder prices fell by 6¢ to 305¢/kg lwt. Dalby led the state for yardings of feeder types with 3169 feeder cattle yarded this week with an average price of 321¢/kg lwt. a fall of 12¢.

Heavy steer prices increased slightly on last week with a 9¢ increase, selling for an average of 269¢/kg lwt. Processor cow prices remained steady remaining at 198¢/kg/lwt but are down 7% over the last four weeks. Victoria has continued to see a steady rise in the price of processor cows, closing out the week at 218¢/kg lwt. Leongatha saw 357 cows yarded at an average price of 211¢/kg lwt, a fall of 7¢ on the previous week. Last week’s East Coast slaughter numbers were down 3% week on week at 115,182 head. This is an increase of 24% on the same time last year and 3% above the 5-year average for the same week.

Next week

The Australian Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) long-term forecast is predicting hot and dry conditions for September to November. This would most likely mean a continuation of the steady flow of young and finished cattle onto the market as producers look to lighten off stock to battle the dry.

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Data sources: MLA, Argus, BOM, Refinitiv, Mecardo

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