ONLINE cattle listings continued their strong start to the year this week, lifting another 14 percent to 19,457 head.
Barring a mid-December offering of close to 20,000 head, it’s the largest offering seen since the drought period 2019-20.
Prices continue to show decent growth, with the Online Young Cattle Indicator up 13 points to 381c/kg.
Despite the large offering, clearance in southern Australia reached 81pc, with Queensland was further back, at low 60s by around 5pm Friday.
After consistently seeing price rises across the board in recent weeks, buyers were much more discerning on which articles they wanted.
Quality of stock was a key factor for price and clearance, with young steers and heifers both up in terms of offering and price. Restockers were less active in the market. Clearance rates for breeding stock was low across many categories.
Processors were active again but less than last week, accounting for 11pc of the sold offering.
It appears that vendors are now resetting their expectations, in a sign that the market is finding a new equilibrium.
Steer prices were mostly flat, with price gains only in the less than 200kg and 200-280kg categories. The larger offering of 2005 head in the 200-280 range averaged 462c/kg, up 50c/kg from last week for a 85pc clearance. Prices ranged from 264-559c/kg. From Allora, NSW 33 Angus cross steers 9-11 months averaging 262kg returned $1260/head or 481c/kg and will travel to a buyer near Crows Nest, QLD.
Steer prices in the 280-330kg category eased 17c/kg to average 394c for 1659 head, while steers 330-400kg registered a similar offering of 2285 head and averaged 375c/kg, down 2c from last week for a 69 clearance. Prices ranged from 251-423c.
From Bonegilla, VIC 49 Wagyu x Angus F1 weaned steers 10-11 months averaging 366kg returned $1550 or 423c/kg and will travel to a buyer in Camperdown, VIC. A further 33 heifer sisters averaging 321kg made 365c/kg.
Heifers less than 200kg, and over 400kg were the better performers this week, while the ranges in between did not clear well.
The offering of heifers 200-280kg tripled to 1978 head but were unchanged in terms of price at 335c. Clearance was 50pc, with prices ranging from 229-418c. From Rolleston, Central QLD 64 Santa heifers 6-12 months averaging 240kg returned $900 or 375c/kg and will travel to a buyer near Warren, NSW.
Heifers less than 200kg saw a five-fold increase to 486 head and averaged 402c/kg, up 35c from last week for an 82pc clearance. Prices ranged from 292-468c. From Tabulam, NSW ten Angus cross heifers 14 months averaging 163kg returned $480 or 294c/kg and will travel to a buyer near Tenterfield, NSW.
The pullback in breeding stock prices continued for station-mated articles, while preg-tested in calf stock mostly saw an uplift in prices but clearance rates were not encouraging.
Station-mated cows registered a larger offering of 309 head and averaged $1908 – down $530 from last week for a 25pc clearance. SM heifers registered a smaller offering of 275 head and averaged $1364 – down $529 from last week for a 23pc clearance.
PTIC heifers registered a larger offering of 1940 head and averaged $1910, up $158 from last week for a 32pc clearance.
SM Cows and Calves registered a larger offering of 1267 head and averaged $2197 – down $55 from last week for a 54pc clearance.
From Goulburn, NSW 43 station-mated Angus cows three years with calves at foot, and averaging 502kg returned $3040/unit and will travel to a buyer in Blayney, NSW.
Prices as at 2pm Friday, 9 February