The latest U.S. Department of Agriculture’s “Cattle on Feed” report showed cattle and calves on feed for the slaughter market in the United States for feedlots with capacity of 1,000 or more head totaled 11.5 million head on December 1, 2017, an 8% increase from December 1, 2016. Analysts had expected cattle on feed to rise by 7%.
Placements in feedlots during November totaled 2.10 million head, a 14% increase above 2016 and much larger that the trade had anticipated. The pre-report average trade estimate was a 6% increase in November. Net placements were 2.03 million head. During November, placements of cattle and calves weighing less than 600 pounds were 610,000 head, 600-699 pounds were 545,000 head, 700-799 pounds were 455,000 head, 800-899 pounds were 294,000 head, 900-999 pounds were 75,000 head, and 1,000 pounds and greater were 120,000 head.
Marketings of fed cattle during November were 3% above the same period last year at 1.84 million head, which was in line with pre-report estimates. This was the highest for November since the series began in 1996, USDA reported.
Other disappearance totaled 71,000 head during November, 3% above 2016.