In the fall of 1989, 30 fed steers (1,069 Ib) marketed through the Sioux Falls Stockyards were purchased by a feeder to go back on feed rather than to slaughter. The cattle were purchased for $70/cwt on a $63/cwt fed steer market. These steers were previously on trial at the SDSU research feedlot. Thirty-two contemporary steers were retained at SDSU for determining subsequent costs of production and economic risks of placing heavy cattle on feed. The fed steer and futures markets were tracked for the next 27 days. During this period, there was no potential for profit based on break evens in relation to the cash market. The only potential for profit was seen near the close of the October futures contracts on days 17 through 27 of the feeding period. After 2 weeks back on feed, weight losses due to shrink were compensated for and steers regressed to average daily gains of 2.5 Ib. A companion study holding similar frame size steers on feed an additional 29 days caused an increase (P<.01) in frequency of yield grade 4 from 0 to 17%.
Number of Pages
South Dakota State University
Copyright © 1989 South Dakota State University
Pankonin, C.M. and Pritchard, R.H., "The Economics of Placing Heavy Steers Back in the Feedlot" (1990). South Dakota Beef Report, 1990. 14.