Derrell S. Peel, Oklahoma State University Extension Livestock Marketing Specialist — Much of 2020 has been preoccupied with daily and weekly slaughter numbers, carcass weights and boxed beef prices, along with monthly cattle on feed dynamics. The intertemporal volatility through the year adds to challenge of assessing what, exactly, is the situation regarding the cattle cycle and longer-term herd dynamics. USDA will be providing estimates on January 29, 2021 regarding cattle inventories going into 2021. The data available at this time provides mixed signals about how herd inventories have changed in 2020. Cowherd changes depend on both heifer retention and…

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