Analyst calls for legislative action in cattle markets for price discovery


Analyst calls for legislative action in cattle markets for price discovery

A livestock market analyst continues to call for legislative action in the cattle market for better price discovery.

Corbitt Wall says cattle market price discovery and transparency legislation need to be passed now while the ‘iron is hot’.  

Wall tells Brownfield while he prefers Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley’s 50-14 bill that would require half of a meat packer’s weekly volume be purchased on a cash basis with a 14-day delivery window, it would be tough to implement because many plants around him in the southern plains don’t buy any cattle on the cash market. “It’s hard to take them from zero to anything, but if you take them to the smaller levels that Deb Fischer’s calling for and those are going to be adjustable even though if we’ve got 10 or 15 in Texas it would be huge if you do it per plant.”

Wall points to Senator Deb Fischer of Nebraska’s bill as a step in the right direction saying it would give some leverage back to cattle producers in the market because feedlots would be able to turn down packer bids. “The way it is now, they can’t turn that bid down because they will get retaliated on the next week,” he says. “They won’t see them for several weeks and have to sit on the cattle or beg them for a spot to grid them.”

Wall says moving from less than three percent of cattle sold on the cash market to at least 15 percent would immediately set stronger prices for cattle producers.

Wall presented at Missouri Farm Bureau’s Commodity Classic.