Profit Tracker: Feedyard Margins Decline 35%


Greg Henderson, Drovers

May 7, 2019


Last week’s $3 per cwt retreat in cash cattle prices pushed feeding margins 35% lower, to an average of $117 profit per head. Margins were $67 per head lower than the previous week, according to the Sterling Beef Profit Tracker.


For the week ending May 3, cash cattle sold for an average of $123.19 per cwt., while the beef cutout closed the week at $228.01 down $3.51 from April 26. The Beef and Pork Profit Trackers are calculated by Sterling Marketing Inc., Vale, Ore.


A year ago cattle feeders were earning an average of $92 per head. Feeder cattle represent 71% of the cost of finishing a steer compared with 72% a year ago.


Farrow-to-finish pork producers saw their margins improve $1 per head with profits of $49 per head. Lean carcass prices traded at $82.99 per cwt., $0.50 per cwt. lower than the previous week, and $4.61higher than a month ago. A year ago pork producer margins were positive $6 per head.


Sterling Marketing president John Nalivka projects cash profit margins for cow-calf producers...


more, including links to Sterling Beef & Pork Profit Trackers