Struggling with Pessimism Over Beef Markets

January 5, 2016 01:35 PM
 
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By: Alan Newport, editor of Drovers/CattleNetwork

This week at church one of my neighbors, Larry Layton, told me he'd sure like to see me write something positive about the cattle markets.

I told him I've been working on it. In fact all last week I strained to write such an article.

The problem is that I've transitioned from my mid-year position of cautiously optimistic to ... hopeful. I think that's the best word I can come up with to describe my current state. Or possibly I'm guardedly pessimistic.

Let me explain. The beef markets have made their move to retrace half of the big, uninterrupted move up from 2009-2014. Now we're seeking new direction. That could be positive, and several pundits think we could average $130 or more in live cattle pricing for the year.

On the other hand, the economy is sickly and weak. The U.S. Gross Domestic Product has been at depression levels since 2008. Underlying everything is an unprecedented 20-year credit bubble created by the Federal Reserve Board's easy-money policy, which of course ramped up dramatically after the so-called "great recession" of 2008 into quantitative easing round one, round two and ultimately, a third round called by a different name.

Read more on CattleNetwork.com.

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