Please find attached this week’s (May 5) Cattle Market Update for Saskatchewan Agriculture. Highlights include:
· Saskatchewan feeder steer prices were mostly improved this week with the exception of the 6-700 lb. steer category which lost $0.50 per cwt. All other weight categories realized increases, ranging from $0.73 per cwt in the 800-900 pound to $5.73 per cwt in the 400-500 pound steers. On average, Saskatchewan feeder steer prices increased by $2.70 per cwt over the week.
· Saskatchewan feeder heifer prices experienced an average increase of $1.46 per cwt for the week, with all reported categories maintaining or registering increases in value. The prices for 700-800 pound heifers were steady with last week while prices increased $3.07 per cwt for 800-900 pound heifers compared to the previous week.
· Labor disruptions at packing plants due to COVID-19 continues to influence valuations of live cattle and boxed beef. Feeder cattle futures movements experienced reduced volatility this week. On Thursday, the April feeder cattle contract closed at 119.175 per cwt. down $0.625 per cwt over last Friday’s US$119.80 per cwt settlement. The May contract increased by $0.375 per cwt for the week to settle at US$117.825 per cwt.
· Live cattle futures prices, traded lower compared with last week. The April contract increased US$5.425 per cwt relative to last Friday to close Thursday at US$90.40 per cwt. The June contract increased $4.62 per cwt compared to the previous week to settle at US$87.25 per cwt.
· Choice beef cutout prices (600-900 lb.) for the week averaged US$349.01 per cwt for the week,
up US$76.68 per cwt from US$272.33 per cwt the previous week, an increase of 28.2 per cent, and $118.74 per cwt higher than the same week a year ago.