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Heavier Cattle Find Price Ceiling

Ca t t l e producers in Manitoba saw prices stabilize during the week ended Feb. 25, and one analyst feels values may have reached their peak, at least for the time being.

Rick Wright with Heartland Order Buying at Hamiota said heavier animals were seeing the largest drop-off in price.

“The cattle over 750 pounds have found some resistance to higher prices this week,” he said. “Buyers are saying, ‘We have enough,’ and that was a pretty common trend right across the board.

“They’re shorter-term cattle, and the market is a little more predictable. The fat market has kind of hit its stride, with guys having inventory in place.”

While heavier cattle were mostly lower, Wright said lighter cattle under 750 lbs. were fully steady, while those in the 400-to 500- lb. range saw a slight increase in price.

“The long-term cattle are going to go to pasture, and then come off as yearlings, so demand for those are still very aggressive,” he said.

Although numbers were only slightly lower during the week, Wright said a decline in volumes is on the horizon.

“We’re going to see a downtrend in cattle being marketed because the numbers were up in the fall, and very few people bought for resale,” he said. “We should see some big numbers this week, and there will be little spurts, but overall things will be lower.”

With soil conditions still very wet from the fall, and significant snowfall amounts still on the ground across the province, producers are concerned about very wet footing for the animals come spring.

“Producers are moving calves right now because they don’t want to introduce them into the feeding market in sloppy pens,” Wright said. “With the cold weather we are having now, there is firm footing and they can get a decent start. Corral conditions will be a mess come spring.”

Meanwhile, the week ended Feb. 25 saw the Canadian dollar close above the US$1.02 level for the first time in three years, as unrest in Libya has traders concerned about oil supplies.

A strong loonie often limits demand from the U.S. for Manitoba’s cattle.

FROM THE AUCTION FLOORS

Note:AllpricesinCanadian dollarsperhundredweight.These pricesalsogenerallyrepresentthe topone-thirdofsalesreportedby theauctionyard.

Ashern Livestock Mart:An estimated 2,266 head of cattle were sold at the sale held Feb. 23. In the slaughter market, D1 and D2 cows sold anywhere from $55 to $63; D3 and D5 cows, $47-$54; age verified, $68-$76.50; and good bulls, $70-$86.25.

Feeder steers weighing 800-900 lbs. brought $98-$123.25; 700-800 lbs., $100-$134; 600-700 lbs., $136- $146.25, 500-600 lbs., $138-$167; 400-500 lbs., $148-$173.50; and 300-400 lbs., $151-$169.

Feeder heifers weighing 700- 800 lbs. brought $105-$123.50; 600-700 lbs., $116-$134; 500-600 lbs., $115-$145.75; and 400-500 lbs., $117-$147; while 300-400 lbs. brought $120-$139.

Gladstone Auction Mart:The Feb. 22 sale saw a total of 1,104 head of cattle sold at the Gladstone yard. In the slaughter market, bulls sold from $60 to $75.25 while cows brought $30-$68.75.

Feeder steers in the 900-to 1,000-lb. weight category traded from $90 to $116.75; 800-900 lbs., $107-$126; 700-800 lbs., $100- $131.50; 600-700 lbs., $100-$148; 500-600 lbs., $110-$164; 400-500 lbs., $110-$171.50; and 300-400 lbs., $115-$160.

Feeder heifers weighing 900- 1,000 lbs. brought $80-$107; 800- 900 lbs., $80-$112.50; 700-800 lbs., $90-$127.50; 600-700 lbs., $90- $132; 500-600 lbs., $100-$136; 400- 500 lbs., $105-$138; and 300-400 lbs., $119-$148.

Grunthal Livestock Auction Mart:There were 101 slaughter cattle and 396 feeders sold at the Grunthal yard on Feb. 23. In the slaughter market, fleshy export cows traded from $57 to $63; lean export cows, $53-$58; mature cows, $48-$55; feeding cows, $60- $65; export bulls, $71-$76; and mature bulls, $64-$70.

Feeder heifers weighing 800-900 lbs. sold from $95 to $110; 700-800 lbs., $108-$120; 600-700 lbs., $117- $127; 500-600 lbs., $125-$148; 400- 500 lbs., $132-$146; and under 400 lbs., $135-$146.

Feeder steers weighing 800-900 lbs. ranged from $104 to $119; 700-800 lbs., $119-$131.25; 600- 700 lbs., $128-$141.50; 500-600 lbs., $140-$162; 400-500 lbs., $160- $174; and under 400 lbs., $164- $175.

Heartland Livestock Services, Brandon:A total of 857 cattle were on offer in Brandon at the Feb. 22 sale. In the slaughter market, D1-D2 cows brought $60-$67.25; D3 cows, $50-$57; and good bulls, $74-$82.25.

Feeder steers weighing 900- 1,000 lbs. ranged from $105 to $115.50; 800-900 lbs., $112- $122.75; 700-800 lbs., $122-$135; 600-700 lbs., $130-$148; 500-600 lbs., $150-$167.50; 400-500 lbs., $155-$173.50; and 300-400 lbs., $160-$182.

Feeder heifers weighing 900- 1,000 lbs. brought $95-$102; 800- 900 lbs., $108-$117; 700-800 lbs., $112-$124.75; 600-700 lbs., $118- $131; 500-600 lbs., $128-$142.50; 400-500 lbs., $135-$155; and 300- 400 lbs., $137-$158.

Heartland Livestock Services, Virden:There were about 1,193 cattle sold at the sale held Feb. 23.

Butcher steers brought $92- $96.75 while butcher heifers sold from $91 to $95. Age-verified/ young cows ranged from $62 to $67; D1 and D2 cows, $61-$66; D3 cows, $55-$60; shelly cows, $45- $55; and mature bulls, $76-$81.75.

Feeder steers weighing 900- 1,000 lbs. brought $109-$116; 800-900 lbs., $115-$123; 700-800 lbs., $119-$133; 600-700 lbs., $132- $148.50; 500-600 lbs., $142-$162; 400-500 lbs., $150-$170; and 300- 400 lbs., $158-$178.

Feeder heifers weighing 900- 1,000 lbs. traded from $95 to $104; 800-900 lbs., $105-$113.50; 700- 800 lbs., $112-$123.50; 600-700 lbs., $118-$131; 500-600 lbs., $127- $142; and 400-500 lbs., $130-$150.

Killarney Auction Mart:There were about 530 cattle sold at the sale held Feb. 24. In the slaughter market, D1 and D2 cows sold from $58 to $65.75, while D3 and D4 cows fetched $37-$57. Slaughter bulls sold from $74.75 to $83.25.

Feeder steers weighing 900-1,000 lbs. brought $92-$109.50; 800-900 lbs., $111-$119; 700-800 lbs., $120- $136; 600-700 lbs., $134.50-$146.25; 500-600 lbs., $139-$153.50; 400-500 lbs., $143.75-$156; and under 400 lbs., $150-$155.

Feeder heifers weighing 900- 1,000 lbs. traded from $99 to $102.50; 800-900 lbs., $104- $110.50; 700-800 lbs., $112.50- $118.75; 600-700 lbs., $117-$130; 500-600 lbs., $130.50-$140; 400- 500 lbs., $134-$145; and 300-400 lbs., $131-$150.

Ste. Rose Auction Mart:A total of 966 cattle were sold at the Feb. 24 sale. In the slaughter market, D1 and D2 cows ranged from $61 to $69; D3 and D4 cows, $54-$60; canners, $40-$52; and bulls, $78- $86.

Feeder steers weighing 900- 1,000 lbs. brought $108-$119; 800- 900 lbs., $112-$124.50; 700-800 lbs., $120-$134.50; 600-700 lbs., $135-$147; 500-600 lbs., $150- $164; 400-500 lbs., $155-$175; and 300-400 lbs., $158-$181.

Feeder heifers weighing 900- 1,000 lbs. brought $100-$109; 800-900 lbs., $105-$119; 700-800 lbs., $110-$126; 600-700 lbs., $120- $134; 500-600 lbs., $130-$144; 400- 500 lbs., $140-$157; and 300-400 lbs., $125-$150.

Taylor Auctions, Melita:The sale held Feb. 24 resulted in 130 slaughter cattle and 526 feeders being sold. In the slaughter market, D1 and D2 cows sold from $62 to $68; D3 and D5 cows, $55-$62; and good bulls, $75-$81.50.

Feeder steers weighing 900- 1,000 lbs. brought $105-$118; 800-900 lbs., $115-$125; 700-800 lbs., $120-$130; 600-700 lbs., $135- $150; 500-600 lbs., $145-$160; 400- 500 lbs., $150-$165; and 300-400 lbs., $160-$175.

Feeder heifers weighing 800- 900 lbs. traded from $105-$115; 700-800 lbs., $110-$120; 600-700 lbs., $115-$125; 500-600 lbs., $120- $130; 400-500 lbs., $130-$145; and 300-400 lbs., $140-$153.

Winnipeg Livestock Sales: There were about 1,150 cattle sold at the sale held Feb. 25. In the slaughter market, age-verified/ young cows ranged from $48 to $65; D1 and D2 cows, $59-$62; D3 cows, $56-$59; shelly cows, $45- $55; and mature bulls, $68-$78.

Feeder steers weighing 900- 1,000 lbs. brought $104.50-$111.50; 800-900 lbs., $112-$120.25; 700- 800 lbs., $118-$129.50; 600-700 lbs., $128-$147.75; 500-600 lbs., $135-$160; 400-500 lbs., $145- $171; and 300-400 lbs., $140-$160.

Feeder heifers weighing 900- 1,000 lbs. traded from $95 to $100; 800-900 lbs., $100-$110; 700-800 lbs., $110-$126; 600-700 lbs., $120- $134.50; 500-600 lbs., $125-$139; 400-500 lbs., $135-$194; and 300- 400 lbs., $130-$137.

———

– Rick Wright, Heartland Order Buying

Buyersaresaying, Wehaveenough,’ andthatwasapretty commontrendright acrosstheboard.”

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