Was the Cattle on Feed Report Considered Bullish or Bearish?


Quick Answer

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) most recent Cattle on Feed report, released in July 2015, was considered bearish, according to BEEF magazine. The next Cattle on Feed report was scheduled to be released Aug. 21, 2015, as reported by the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) of the USDA.

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Full Answer

The Cattle on Feed report is a survey that provides an estimate of the number of cattle being fed for the slaughter market expected to grade out at select or better, according to the NASS. The survey, conducted in the 16 largest cattle-feeding states, represents the numbers being produced by roughly 2,000 cattle feeders with more than 1,000 heads of cattle. The Cattle on Feed survey is conducted monthly, and the report is issued on the third Friday of each month.

The July 2015 Cattle on Feed report found the number of cattle on feed in large feedlots to be slightly more than 10 million, as reported by the Capital Press. That number is up 2 percent from July 2014. The July report also found that nearly 1.5 million heads of cattle were placed in feedlots in June. The Capital Press article references a report by North Dakota State University economist Tom Petry for the Livestock Marketing Information Center that explained larger numbers of cattle were likely placed in feedlots due to drought conditions in states west of the Continental Divide.

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