After climbing higher earlier in the week, the cattle markets nose-dived on Friday with live cattle off $2+ and feeders down $3+. This as the light $140 cash cattle trade seen on Thursday became more widespread in both the North and South regions. I read more commentary this morning of seasonal traders still wanting to talk of an average 13% rally from summer lows to fall highs, but now that we're a good six weeks beyond the summer low timeframe, who could even suggest a normal pattern?? Non-current showlists and very heavy carcass weights remain a real problem, with the average carcass now 25 lbs above last year and an all-time record high. USDA monthly S&D tables out on Friday showed yet another decline to their 2015 beef production estimate and increase to their 2016 estimate. 2016 beef production is now estimated up 5.9% vs this year. Also remember the USDA will be releasing their monthly Cattle on Feed report this Friday, where early ideas have the Sep 1 on feed count near 103% of last year, Aug placements 100%, and Aug marketings 95%.
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