The average guess for the number of cattle in the nation’s feedyards as of January 1 in Urner Barry’s monthly survey was 2.1% above a year ago.
The US Department of Agriculture’s monthly on-feed report is scheduled for release at 14:00 Chicago time (20:00 UK time) eastern time Friday.
The January 1 on-feed number is predicted on average to be 12.284m head, up 252,651 head, or 2.1%, from the previous month’s figure of 12.031m.
The five-year average for the on-feed number is 11.105m head.
Rise in placements
Placements of young cattle into the feedyards in December were predicted on average to be 3.3% above a year ago.
The range of guesses was from 0.5% to 6.5% over the year-ago figure.
The average of analysts’ projections for placements last month puts the number at 1.825m head, 8.3% above the five-year average.
The placement number in December last year was 1.767m head.
Marketings, or those shipped out for slaughter during the month, were predicted on average at 5.3% above a year ago.
The average guess for marketings projects a figure of 1.833m head, 6.4% above the five-year average.
December had one more week day compared with a year ago.