Vendors stick to ‘wait and see’ approach with reduced online offerings

Beef Central, 21/08/2022

This run run of 103 Angus heifers 13-14 months averaging 302kg from Thallon, Southern Queensland returned 864.2c/kg or $2610/head – $600 above their reserve to a buyer from nearby Mitchell.

Commercial cattle catalogues remained extremely thin in online trading this week, with the offering of 5298 head just 3pc up on the previous week.

In what was almost a carbon-copy of last week’s commercial cattle auctions, seasonally low offerings and ferocious competition spurred prices higher across most categories. However, context in livestock markets is crucial, and this week’s offering was 69pc and 60pc below the corresponding weeks in 2021 and 2020, respectively.

See Friday’s Beef Central article on the impact that low volume is having on demand and price.

The “wait-and-hold” approach was maintained for another week, as further wet conditions through parts of southeastern Australia bolstered the eagerness for spring heat and pasture growth.

Illustrating the turn in the market sentiment, the average selling price above reserve hit $209/head this week, with an 82pc clearance – just down on last week’s $213/head above reserve and 94pc clearance.

To put into context, for the week ending July 1, the 61pc clearance resulted in final sale prices exceeding reserve by only $87/head.

All young steer prices kicked higher again this week, with a smaller, but comparatively even offering across the four main categories. Steers 200-280kg averaged 686c/kg or 52c/kg higher ($1702/head, up +$97 on last week), with a 95pc clearance for the 649 head offered.

From Hannaford, western Queensland, a line of 77 Angus steers 7-10 months averaging 260kg returned $1970.

The offering of 643 steers 280-330kg sold to rampant bidding, producing a 96pc clearance, with prices kicking 63c/kg or $206 on last week, to average 661c or $2003. A similar size offering of 626 head of 330-400kg steers cleared 92pc, averaging 25c/kg or $85 higher, at 598c or $2133.

From Gerogery in the NSW Riverina, a line of 45 Poll Hereford backgrounder steers 12-13 months averaging 366kg, returned $2240 and will travel to a buyer in Irrewarra, Victoria.

Another highlight for the category came from the Tasmanian cattle sale, where a line of 28 Angus steers from Calder, NW Tasmania 10-14 months averaging 333kg returned $2230/head – $400 above their reserve, when sold to a buyer in Smithton, Tasmania.

While the feeder steer +400kg clearance was down compared to its lighter compatriots, at 72pc for the 425 head offered, it failed to hold down the price surge, averaging 24c/kg or $151 higher on last week, at $2369. Topping the market was a line of 465kg Angus steers from Cootamundra, NSW, 18-19 months returning returned $2690/head – headed to a buyer in SA.

This line of 465kg Angus steers 18-19 months from Cootamundra, NSW returned $2690/head – headed to a buyer in SA.

Compared to the young steers, it was a more volatile market for the young heifers this week, with large movements in both directions. Heifers 200-280kg averaged $217 or 96c/kg lower on last week, at 553c/kg or $1358/head, as breed and location impacted the final average.

The 700 head offered sold to a 90pc clearance and ranged from $960-$1625/head. A line of 80 Angus x Droughtmaster heifers from Mitchell, Queensland 6-10 months averaging 272kg returned $1625.

Numbers were significantly lower for the remaining young heifer categories. One feature for the week was the sale of a large run of 103 Angus heifers 13-14 months averaging 302kg from Thallon, Southern Queensland. These potential future breeders returned 864.2c/kg or $2610/head – $600 above their reserve to a buyer from nearby Mitchell, Queensland.

Breeding cattle

A very thin market of PTIC heifers were offered this week, with the 359 head recording a 57pc clearance at the closure of the auction. Prices for the week averaged $31 cheaper on last week, at $2527/head. From Cooma, NSW, 41 PTIC Angus heifers 23-24 months averaging 462kg returned $3180/head – travelling to Forbes, Central Western NSW.

PTIC cows sold to steady demand, with prices averaging $89 higher on last week, at $2405/head – with a 56pc clearance rate for the 449 head offered. 17 three-year-old Angus PTIC cows from Naracoorte, SA, 523kg returned $3060 – $600 above their reserve to a buyer in Moutajup, Victoria.

From Henty in the NSW Riverina, a line of 78 station-mated Angus cows, 38-39 months averaging 497kg with CAF, returned $4500. They will take a short trip over the Murray River to a buyer from Wodonga, Victoria.

Prices as at 2pm, Friday 19 August.

Source: AuctionsPlus





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