On June 1 the USDA estimated total inventory of cattle in feedlots with +1000 head capacity at 11.671 million head, 57,000 head or 0.5% lower than a year ago. Analysts on average were expecting the inventory to be 1% lower than a year ago. Last month the on feed inventory was 607,000 head smaller than a year ago but a decline of 570,000 head in marketings quickly reversed that situation. Even more importantly, there is a significant backlog of cattle in the front end. In other words, animals that should have been marketed in April and May are still in the feedlot waiting to go to processing plants.
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