Steer prices stronger in 16,700 head online offering

June 11, 2024

Cattle numbers experienced a five percent decline, totalling 16,702 head on Auctions Plus last week, as softer demand led to a clearance rate of 54 percent. Most categories of steers saw price improvements, while heifer results were varied.

The majority of listings originated from NSW, with 8,306 head marking an 18 percent increase from the previous week, constituting 50 percent of the total offering. Queensland followed with the second largest listings, offering 4,638 head, down by 9 percent from the previous week. Processor activity remained subdued, representing 5.2 percent or 464 head of the sold offering, predominantly in steer lines weighing between 280-330kg.

The price gap between weaner steers and heifers continued to widen, with weaner steers commanding a 22 percent price premium over their heifer counterparts, the highest recorded on Auctions Plus since 2016.Steers witnessed a robust price rally last week, with prices increasing by $25-$345 across four categories, except for one category which experienced a slight decrease. Steers weighing over 400kg saw the largest gains, with 804 head increasing by $345 or 37 cents/kg to average $1,819 or 390 cents/kg. Selective purchasing was evident in this category with a 38 percent clearance rate.

For instance, 225 Angus steers aged 20-22 months from Walcha NSW, averaging 470kg, fetched 413 cents/kg and will be transported to a buyer near Orange, NSW. Steers weighing between 280-330kg saw a 26 cents/kg increase this week, averaging 388 cents for the 2,173 head. Demand remained robust for this mid-weight category, achieving a 75 percent clearance. For example, 29 Angus steers aged 12 months from Armidale fetched 390 cents/kg.


Heifer prices were mixed this week, with two categories witnessing increases and two experiencing decreases. Heifers weighing between 330-400kg saw the largest gains of 33 cents/kg, averaging 329 cents for the 607 head on offer. For instance, 126 Angus heifers aged 14-15 months from Lake Mundi, VIC, averaging 357kg, returned $1,240/head or 348 cents/kg. The most populous heifer category was the 200-280kg weight range, with 2,080 head on offer, achieving a strong demand with a 71 percent clearance. Prices slightly eased on a cents/kg basis, averaging 315 cents. For example, 80 Angus heifers aged 9-10 months from Walcha, NSW, averaging 267kg, fetched 424 cents/kg.

Breeding Females

Breeding female markets showed mixed trends last week, with four out of seven categories recording increases. Notably, SM cows saw a weekly increase of $288, averaging $1,821/head for the 996 head. For instance, 45 Angus heifers aged two years from Lindenow South VIC, averaging 505kg, returned $2,170/head and will be transported to a buyer near Mungindi, QLD. PTIC heifers witnessed 1,226 offerings last week, with prices declining by $96/head to average $1,505. For example, 11 Angus heifers aged 24-26 months from Tamworth, NSW, averaging 546kg, fetched $2,020 or 370 cents/kg and will be transported to a buyer near Binnaway NSW.

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