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Cattle on Feed Report     05/22  14:45

May 1 Cattle on Feed Down 5%

By DTN Staff
This article was originally posted at 2:10 p.m. CDT on Friday, 
May 22. It was last updated at 2:45 p.m.

                      USDA Actual   Average Estimate       Range

On Feed May 1             95.%            95.0%      94.1%-95.7%
Placed in April           78%             77.1%      71.8%-86.7%
Marketed in April         76%             74.7%      70.0%-82.7%

OMAHA (DTN) -- Cattle and calves on feed for the slaughter 
market in the United States for feedlots with capacity of 1,000 
or more head totaled 11.2 million head on May 1, 2020, according 
to the USDA's Cattle on Feed report released Friday.
The inventory was 5% below May 1, 2019.
Placements in feedlots during April totaled 1.43 million head, 
22% below 2019. Placements were the second lowest for April 
since the series began in 1996. Net placements were 1.36 million 
During April, placements of cattle and calves weighing less than 
600 pounds were 295,000 head, 600-699 pounds were 180,000 head, 
700-799 pounds were 315,000 head, 800-899 pounds were 392,000 
head, 900-999 pounds were 180,000 head, and 1,000 pounds and 
greater were 70,000 head.
Marketings of fed cattle during April totaled 1.46 million head, 
24% below 2019. April marketings are the lowest since the series 
began in 1996.
Other disappearance totaled 70,000 head during April, 17% above 
"Analysts pegged the May Cattle on Feed Report almost exactly," 
said DTN Livestock Analyst ShayLe Stewart. "The industry 
continues to be pressured by the backlog of fed cattle, which is 
affecting both placements and marketings. 
"When put into perspective, and when one understands the current 
challenges COVID-19 has put on the cattle processing supply 
chain, it makes perfect sense why both placements and marketings 
are down," Stewart said. "The industry could not process and 
handle the cattle that were ready to be slaughtered over a month 
ago, leaving producers and feedlot managers little incentive to 
want to fill their pens with more feeders. And, although 
slaughter speeds have crept higher, processing less than 600,000 
head a week when supplies are at their greatest peak for the 
year creates immense hardship and great difficulties when trying 
to market fat cattle."

DTN subscribers can view the full Cattle on Feed reports in the 
Livestock Archives folder under the Markets menu. The report is 
also available at https://www.nass.usda.gov/.

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