A pair of just-released USDA reports suggest supplies of US-born cattle will be tighter next year than some analysts expected.
A semi-annual cattle inventory report showed a smaller calf crop for 2012, down 2.3% from last year, compared to expectations for a 1.6% drop. Beef cows having calves were down nearly 3%, a steeper fall than the forecast drop of 2.1%.
A monthly cattle-on-feed report met expectations, at a nearly 2.7% year-over-year increase on July 1, with more due to arrive in July because of drought conditions. The reports suggest a previously forecast herd expansion isn't occuring.
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