Feedyard closeouts took a hit from last week’s $3 per cwt. decline in cash prices, but average margins remain above $77 per head. The 5-area direct cash price slipped to $117.36 per cwt., while break evens held relatively steady at $111.78, according to the Sterling Beef Profit Tracker.
The cost of feeder cattle calculated against last week’s marketings held steady while feed costs increased $7 per head, according to the weekly average calculations.
Beef packer margins declined $3 per head to average $96. The beef cutout held steady at $203 per cwt. The Beef and Pork Profit Trackers are calculated by Sterling Marketing Inc., Vale, Ore.
Average feed costs totaled $283 per head, while cattle placed on feed last week have a projected breakeven of $114 per cwt.
The cost of finishing a steer last week was calculated at $1,556 per head, which is $58 more than the $1,498 a year ago. A month ago cattle feeders were earning $29 per head, while a year ago profits were calculated at $92 per head. Feeder cattle represent 74% of the cost of finishing a steer, compared to 75% last year.