Cattle on Feed Report Preview 04/22 09:17
April 1 Cattle on Feed Numbers Not a Simple Apples-to-Apples
By ShayLe Stewart
DTN Livestock Analyst
USDA Actual Average Estimate Range
On Feed April 1 106.2% 105.3%-107.5%
Placed in March 134.3% 128.0%-143.4%
Marketed in March 101.1% 100.5%-101.6%
OMAHA (DTN) -- Before you look at these analysts' estimates for
Friday's Cattle on Feed report, there are a couple of things we
need to discuss.
First, the Cattle on Feed report compares the previous month's
data to that of a year ago. So, Friday's report will be a recap
of what transpired in March 2021 compared to that of March 2020.
Comparing the two years as if it were a simple apples-to-apples
comparison would be problematic in and of itself, as the past 15
months have been one for the history books.
The Cattle on Feed report can still be a useful tool in
analyzing recent data and trying to forecast what may develop in
the weeks and months to come, but it would be irresponsible to
only compare the recent data to that of a year ago. From this
point, moving through the end of the 2021 calendar year, it will
be vital to compare 2021 numbers to that of 2019, as well as to
the three- and five-year averages.
Secondly, looking back to February and then March 2021 and the
weather events that occurred during this time, larger placements
are most certainly expected, as the snowstorm that blanketed the
entire country in February made placing and transporting cattle
difficult. Consequently, more cattle then were placed in March
of 2021 as weather-restricting conditions subsided.
When Friday's report is unveiled, it is critical that we study
the numbers and make sound comparisons instead of just having an
emotional reaction to the steep increases when compared to year-
USDA will release its April 1 Cattle on Feed report at 2 p.m.
CDT on Friday.
ShayLe Stewart can be reached at email@example.com
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