November Cattle Market Update with OSU's Derrell Peel


Oklahoma Farm Report

22 Nov 2021


Weekly, Oklahoma State University Extension Livestock Marketing Specialist Derrell Peel offers his expertise in the cattle industry. This is a part of the weekly series known as the "Cow-Calf Corner" published electronically by Paul Beck. Today, Peel talks about November cattle markets.


The November USDA-NASS Cattle on Feed report was well anticipated and should not cause big surprises in the market. Feedlot placements in October were 2.245 million head, 102.4% of last year. Marketings in October were 1.788 million head, 95.5% of one year ago. There was one less business day in October 2021 compared to last year, so average daily marketings were equal to last year. The November 1 on-feed total was 11.948 million head, 99.8% of last year. Though the November feedlot inventory was only fractionally lower than last year, it does make the fifth consecutive month of year over year declines in feedlot totals.


Average fed steers and heifer prices were reported at $134-135/cwt. for the end of the week prior to Thanksgiving. After staying in the lower $120s since June, fed prices moved above $125/cwt. in the last week of October and pushed above $130 by the second week of November. Market-ready supplies of fed cattle have tightened and packers are actively chasing cattle for the first time in many months.


Prices for big feeder cattle have increased seasonally from September to November. Average Oklahoma auction prices for 800-850-pound, M/L, No. 1steers have increased nearly 6% from September and are up about 21% from the beginning of the year. This increase in feeder prices reflects generally tighter feeder cattle supplies and fed market optimism as reflected in Live Cattle futures prices in 2022. This is despite sharply higher feedlot cost of gain, up 33% from January to September in Kansas feedlot surveys. Stocker calf prices are up sharply from early October lows. Prices for 450-500-pound, M/L, No. 1 steers are up 13% in the last seven weeks and are nearly 8% higher since the beginning of the year.


Oklahoma auction totals for feeder cattle are down...