Low Asian demand plus domestic glut hit US beef

By Joanna Levin

THE American beef complex has continued to slide this week, with further losses throughout the industry. This has ranged from store cattle through to wholesale beef prices.

The market is suffering from a combination of poor Asian demand for US beef and a domestic glut in supply. The months of poor prices has discouraged owners from slaughtering their cattle, resulting in a backlog of ever heavier live cattle in Americas feedlots.

The recent rally in maize prices has put further pressure on the cattle industry, while feedlot prices have tended to move in inverse relation to the cost of weight gain for store cattle.

The Chicago September store cattle price closed on Friday 4 September at 66.05¢/lb, down from around 68.8¢/lb the previous week.

In the cash market, packers dropped their bids to 56¢/lb against producers offers of 58¢/lb. This compares with market levels of around 59¢/lb in August.

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