ANALYSIS - Analysts at Allendale, Inc. have released their Cattle on Feed estimates ahead of the May 17th USDA report.
April placements are expected to be 14.7% higher than last year. Feedlot margins remain negative. Cash cattle prices averaged $128 in April compared with March's $127.
April placements appear large as they are compared with the low April 2012 placement (which was 14.8% less than 2011). Cattle placed in April will be marketed from September through November.
Allendale anticipates a marketing total 2.2% higher than April of 2012. This is made after a 4.6% increase due to a calendar adjustment, one more weekday in 2013 vs. 2012, for this month.
Total Cattle on Feed as of May 1 will be 3.5% smaller than last year. This would be larger than the April 1 survey which showed 5.0% fewer cattle. Market ready cattle numbers are tight now and will transition to adequate by late summer.
Allendale projects a 664 million lb. total pork stock level for the end of April. The five year average is 594 million lbs. for the end of April. The Allendale estimate represents an increase of 16 million lbs. from the previous month. The five year average month to month change for April is a 4 million lb. increase.
Beef stocks, at 531 million lbs., are above the five year average of 432. This month's number represents a 17 million lb. increase from the previous month. The five year average change is for a 6 million lb. decrease.
**Pork Belly stocks are estimated - in million pounds while Cattle on Feed is estimated as a percentage compared to last year.
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