Profit Tracker: Eureka! In the Black

November 30, 2016 03:30 PM

For the first time in months, average feedyard margins were positive last week. Closeouts showed $52 profit per head for the week ending Nov. 25, $83 better than the previous week, according to the Sterling Beef Profit Tracker. The gains were the result of a near $3 rally in the 5-area fed cattle price to $111.

The total cost of finishing a steer last week was $1,492, compared to $1,597 the previous week and $2,250 last year. The Beef and Pork Profit Trackers are calculated by Sterling Marketing, Vale, Ore.

Beef packer margins decreased $26 per head to $107. Packers earned an average of $20 per head during the same period a year ago.

A month ago cattle feeders were losing $52 per head, while a year ago losses were calculated at $486 per head. Feeder cattle represent 73% of the cost of finishing a steer, compared to 79% last year.

Farrow-to-finish pork producers lost $33 per hog last week, about $4 less than the week before. A month ago farrow-to-finish pork producers lost about $35 per head.

Pork packers saw their margins decline $1.50 per head to $54.65. Negotiated prices for lean hogs were $43.43 per cwt. last week, about $0.73 per cwt. higher. Cash prices for fed cattle are $16 per cwt. lower than last year and prices for lean hogs are $10 per cwt. lower.

Sterling Marketing president John Nalivka projects average cash profit margins for cow-calf producers at $144 per cow this year. In 2017, Nalivka projects cow-calf losses of $24. Last year’s estimated average cow-calf margins were $432 per cow.

Back to news

Million Dollar Wildfire Relief Challenge

Click here to learn more about the Million Dollar Wildfire Relief Challenge, and see how you can help in the rebuilding effort.



Spell Check

No comments have been posted to this News Article

Corn College TV Education Series


Get nearly 8 hours of educational video with Farm Journal's top agronomists. Produced in the field and neatly organized by topic, from spring prep to post-harvest. Order now!


Market Data provided by