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Cattle on Feed Preview                 11/20 12:28

                        USDA Actual  Average Guess      Range
Cattle on Feed:
On Feed Nov. 1             xxxxx         104.5%     103.5-105.5%
Placed in October          xxxxx          99.0%      94.0-104.5%
Marketed in October        xxxxx         104.0%     103.0-105.0%

In the interest of wrapping up cattle stats before Thanksgiving, 
USDA will release the Nov. 1 bunk line count this Wednesday, 
several days earlier than the normal monthly schedules.
 
Most expect the on-feed report to show a seasonal increase in 
feedlot placements during October to the highest level of the 
year. On the other hand, October placements probably slipped a 
bit below last year's big in-movement (i.e., 10% larger than the 
2016 placements and the largest October placements since 1999).

Fed steers and heifers marketed in October are projected at 
104%-105% of a year ago. Much of the increase can probably be 
explained in terms of one more marketing day last month than 
October 2017.

Barring any major surprise, Wednesday's bottom line should put 
the total Nov. 1 feedlot inventory a little over 11.75 million 
head, or roughly 4% greater than last year. That would be the 
largest November feedlot inventory since 2011.

Given the current premium structure of live cattle futures, the 
board seems more braced to handle a bullish on-feed surprise 
than a bearish one.

For more of John's commentary, visit http://feelofthemarket.com


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