Australian Cattle Prices Hit All Time High
For the first time on record, the Eastern Young Cattle Indicator (EYCI) cracked the 600c/kg cwt yesterday. As the general benchmark of Australian cattle prices, the EYCI is a seven-day rolling average, with beef producers and market analyst watching the EYCI very closely for months.
Ben Thomas, Manager of Market Information from Meat and Livestock Australia, states that “widespread rain – albeit far from drought breaking in many cases – over the Christmas period acted as the catalyst for many producers to retain stock, while also drawing out strong competition for the limited pool of cattle.”
Markets that had particularly large price jumps were IRLX Inverell, where EYCI-eligible cattle lifted nearly 60c from the previous week, averaging 620.25c/kg cwt. Perhaps even more impressive, in the first sale for the year; EYCI-eligible cattle at Roma averaged 660.5c/kg cwt – up 191c from the first sale of 2015. Likewise, Dalby and Singleton also performed well, with EYCI-eligible cattle averaging approximately 610c/kg cwt at both centres.
“The expectation is that cattle availability will remain tight for January, and thereafter will depend on the timeliness of follow-up rainfall. While the EYCI hitting 600c marks a significant milestone in the Australian cattle industry, the benefits will only be reaped by those in the fortunate position of having cattle to sell – after what was an unprecedented three years of cattle turn-off,” said Mr Thomas.
Source: Queensland Country Life. January 13 2016.