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Heavier Weights Mean Lighter Prices

Ca t t l e marketings to auction yards in Manitoba held fairly steady during the week ended March 19, al though values for the heavier classes of animals weakened off. The Canadian dollar’s attempt to move to parity with the U. S. greenback was viewed as an undermining price influence.

“During the previous week, we saw prices for the heavier-weight cattle in Alberta begin to back off, and that trend carried over into Manitoba this week,” said Gene Parks with Pipestone Livestock Sales.

Animals in the 800-to 900-pound weight class particularly were under pressure, he said, adding that “this kind of price weakness for those classes of animals is not necessarily anything new for this time of year.”

Cattle with extra flesh saw some pretty heavy discounting, which producers need to be aware of when moving those types of animals, he said.

Parks felt that if producers could see an improvement in the price for finished cattle, it could be viewed as some sort of encouragement for the industry.

“The futures prices for fat cattle in the U. S. are not very strong, and that is being reflected back to the prices being obtained for cattle hitting the Manitoba auction yards,” Parks said.

Grass-type of cattle traditionally pick up strength as spring approaches and that was seen as being the case again this year, he said. “The grass cattle are in strong demand as long as they are not overfleshed.”

The slaughter cow market continued to hold steady in most cases, with values remaining better than what they were two months ago, Parks said. Much of the strength in the cow sector continues to reflect the lack of those animals being marketed.

Some of that has to do with cow numbers being down significantly, as well as with producers now concentrating on calving rather than marketing.

The implementation of spring road restrictions may also be holding back deliveries.

The strong Canadian dollar definitely hurt prices during the week, Parks said.

The Canadian unit strengthened to the US99.37-cent mark during Friday’s (March 19) session before closing the day at around US98.41 cents. The last time the Canadian unit was that firm was in July 2007. The Canadian dollar has been forecast by economists to move above parity with the U. S. dollar within the next week or two.

FROM THE AUCTION FLOORS

Note: All prices in Canadian dollars per hundredweight. These prices also generally represent the top one-third of sales reported by the auction yard.

Ashern Livestock Mart: An estimated 2,540 head of cattle were sold at the sale held March 17. In the slaughter market, heiferettes traded up to $69; older shelly cows $20 and up; age-verified D1 and D2 cows, $48-$59; D3 and D5 cows, $40-$48; and good bulls, $60-$71.

Feeder steers weighing 900-1,000 lbs. ranged from $80 to $88; 800-900 lbs., $80-$95.10; 700-800 lbs., $85-$105; 600-700 lbs., $95-$120; 500-600 lbs., $100-$125; 400-500 lbs., $110-$129; and 300-400 lbs., $116-$132.50.

Feeder heifers weighing 700-800 lbs. brought $80-$94; 600-700 lbs., $90-$104; 500-600 lbs., $92-$106; 400-500 lbs., $94-$106; and 300-400 lbs., $100-$109.

Gladstone Auction Mart: The March 16 sale saw a total of 1,279 head of cattle sold at the Gladstone yard. In the slaughter market, bulls sold from $55 to $73.25, while cows brought $30-$55, with age verified up to $65.

Feeder steers in the 900-to 1,000-lb. weight category traded from $68 to $89.25; 800-900 lbs., $76-$93.50; 700-800 lbs., $85-$106.50; 600-700 lbs., $95-$118; 500-600 lbs., $100-$129.50; 400-500 lbs., $110-$131.50; and 300-400 lbs., $120-$136.

Feeder heifers weighing 800-900 lbs. sold from $70 to $89.50; 700-800 lbs., $75-$100; 600-700 lbs., $75-$104; 500-600 lbs., $80-$107.25; 400-500 lbs., $80-$108; and 300-400 lbs., $90-$109.

Grunthal Livestock Auction Mart: The market report from Grunthal was not available this week.

Heartland Livestock Services, Brandon: A total of 1,914 cattle were on offer in Brandon during the week. Butcher steers traded from $74 to $79.25; butcher heifers, $74-$78.50; D1-D2 cows, $45-$55, age verified $54-$57.25; D3 cows $38-$45; and mature bulls $64-$66.25.

Feeder steers weighing 900-1,000 lbs. sold from $83 to $88.50; 800-900 lbs., $85-$93; 700-800 lbs., $93-$102; 600-700 lbs., $100-$112; 500-600 lbs., $110-$126; 400-500 lbs., $112-$127; and 300-400 lbs., $115-$129.

Feeder heifers weighing 800-900 lbs., sold from $82 to $86; 700-800 lbs., $85-$95.75; 600-700 lbs., $92-$98; 500-600 lbs., $90-$108.25; 400-500 lbs., $93-$106; and 300-400 lbs., $100-$108.

Heartland Livestock Services, Virden: There were about 1,711 cattle sold at the sale held March 17. Butcher steers brought $74-$78, while butcher heifers sold from $73 to $77.25. Age-verified/ young cows sold from $50 to $56.50; D1-D2 cows, $47-$53; D3 cows, $43-$47; shelly cows, $37-$43 and mature bulls, $64-$69.25.

Feeder steers weighing 900-1,000 lbs. brought $82-$88.50; 800-900 lbs., $86-$94.50; 700-800 lbs., $92-$104; 600-700 lbs., $100-$115; 500-600 lbs., $110-$125; 400-500 lbs., $117-$132; and 300-400 lbs., $118-$132.

Feeder heifers weighing 900-1,000 lbs. traded from $76 to $83; 800-900 lbs., $78-$85.50; 700-800 lbs., $82-$94; 600-700 lbs., $87-$98; 500-600 lbs., $93-$104; and 400-500 lbs., $98-$106.

Killarney Auction Mart: There were 610 cattle sold at the March 18 sale. In the slaughter market, D1 and D2 cows went from $42 to $50.50; D3 and D4 cows $25-$38; and bulls, $63.75-$64.50.

Feeder steers weighing 900-1,000 lbs. sold from $72 to $85.50; 800-900 lbs., $79-$93; 700-800 lbs., $83-$100; 600-700 lbs., $92-$109.50; 500-600 lbs., $100-$122.75; 400-500 lbs., $109-$128; and 300-400 lbs., $104-$111.

Feeder heifers weighing 900-1,000 lbs. brought $69-$82.75; 800-900 lbs., $77-$86.50; 700-800 lbs., $72-$87.50; 600-700 lbs., $83-$96.50; 500-600 lbs., $88-$98; 400-500 lbs., $90-$102; and 300-400 lbs., $82-$88.

Pipestone Livestock Sales: There were 755 cattle sold at the sale held on March 15. Included in the sale were 98 slaughter animals and 567 feeders.

In the slaughter market, D1 cows sold from $50 to $56.75, age verified up to the mid-$60s; D2 cows, $35-$46; D3 cows, $11-$19; and bulls, $64-$68.25.

Feeder steers weighing over 900 lbs. fetched $70-$91; 800-900 lbs., $78-$96; 700-800 lbs., $86-$103; 600-700 lbs., $92-$114; 500-600 lbs., $100-$126; and 400-500 lbs., $110-$130.

Feeder heifers weighing over 900 lbs. traded from $73 to $86; 800-900 lbs., $76-$89; 700-800 lbs., $78-$93; 600-700 lbs., $84-$99; 500-600 lbs., $87-$104; and 400-500 lbs., $90-$107.

Ste. Rose Auction Mart: A total of 1,500 cattle were sold at the March 18 sale. In the slaughter market, D1 and D2 cows ranged from $45 to $57; D3-D4 cows, $32-$40; and bulls, $63-$69.50.

Feeder steers weighing 900-1,000 lbs. traded from $80 to $87; 800-900 lbs., $85-$95; 700-800 lbs., $95-$104; 600-700 lbs., $105-$115; 500-600 lbs., $110-$129; 400-500 lbs., $115-$134; and 300-400 lbs., $115-$133.

Feeder heifers weighing 900-1,000 lbs., brought $78-$85; 800-900 lbs., $80-$90; 700-800 lbs., $85-$95; 600-700 lbs., $90-$102; 500-600 lbs., $95-$107; 400-500 lbs., $95-$110 and 300-400 lbs., $95-$104.

Taylor Auctions, Melita: The sale held March 18 resulted in 90 slaughter cattle and 1,000 feeders being sold. In the slaughter market, A1 and A2 steers over 1,000 lbs., brought $75-$78.50; A1 and A2 heifers over 850 lbs., $73-$77; D1 and D2 cows, $45-$58; D3 and D5 cows, $35-$45; and good bulls, $63-$68.

Feeder steers weighing 900-1,000 lbs. brought $80-$85; 800-900 lbs., $85-$95; 700-800 lbs., $95-$100; 600-700 lbs., $100-$110; 500-600 lbs., $105-$114; 400-500 lbs., $105-$122; and 300-400 lbs., $110-$124.

Feeder heifers weighing 800-900 lbs. traded from $80 to $85; 700-800 lbs., $85-$90; 600-700 lbs., $90-$95; 500-600 lbs., $90-$98; 400-500 lbs., $95-$102; and 300-400 lbs., $100-$108.

Winnipeg Livestock Sales: There were about 1,929 head of cattle sold during the week ending March 19. In the slaughter market, choice steers and heifers sold from $76 to $77.50; select steers and heifers, $73-$76; dry fed cows, $44-$48; good fleshed, $39-$44; lean, $32-$39; young age verified, $45-$54; and good bulls, $54-$65.25.

Feeder steers weighing 900-1,000 lbs. brought $80-$89; 800-900 lbs., $86-$93.50; 700-800 lbs., $92-$103; 600-700 lbs., $102-$118; 500-600 lbs., $108-$122; and 400-500 lbs., $110-$130.

Feeder heifers weighing 900-1,000 lbs. traded from $70 to $75; 800-900 lbs., $79-$86.50; 700-800 lbs., $85-$90; 600-700 lbs., $88-$100; 500-600 lbs., $92-$110; and 400-500 lbs., $95-$108.50.

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