CS Agriculture US Cattle Sep 13

Commodity Spotlight Agriculturals

Declining cattle numbers push US cattle prices to a record high

As compared with its mid-June level, the price of live cattle in Chicago is up 10% at 130 US cents per pound. Feeder cattle prices are now even higher than the record levels they achieved in the first half of 2012. Although prices are all reacting in the short term to the processing figures from the abattoirs and to the upcoming public holidays, the bigger picture is determined by cattle numbers: The number of animals added to the feedlots has been declining for months. This will further reduce the supply of cattle ready for slaughtering and thus of beef in the medium term, which ought to continue ensuring high price levels.

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