When Will Cattle Finishing Be Profitable Again?05/09/2016
Monthly fed cattle net returns have been negative since December 2014. A few months ago, it appeared that we would climb above breakeven this spring. However, that was before the recent drop in fed cattle prices. Using data from the Livestock Marketing Information Center (www.lmic.info), fed cattle prices in Kansas dropped from $135.93 per cwt. for the week ending on March 27 to $123.84 per cwt. for the week ending May 1. What has this done to the prospects for breaking even in the near term? This article discusses trends in feeding cost of gain and net returns for steers finished in Kansas, and the relationship between projected fed cattle prices and breakeven prices for upcoming months.