By Kirk Maltais

Inventories of cattle on feedlots are on par from this time last year, according to data from the U.S. Agriculture Department, exceeding forecasts calling for a slight decrease in inventories.

In its monthly Cattle-on-Feed Report, the USDA said Friday that 11.58 million head of cattle were on feedlots in the U.S. as of June 1. That is virtually unchanged from this time last year, and exceeds the outlook of analysts surveyed by The Wall Street Journal this month who forecast the on-feed figure to drop slightly.

New placements of cattle on feedlots also exceeded analyst outlooks. New placements totaled 2.05 million head, which is 4.2% higher than this time last year. Surveyed analysts were looking for a slight reduction.

New marketings of fed cattle rose slightly to 1.96 million head, beating analyst forecasts of a small increase.

Ahead of Friday's report, most-active live cattle futures trading on the CME rose 0.4% to $1.83275 a pound. Lean hog futures rose by 0.2% to 89.225 cents a pound.

To see related data, search "USDA Monthly Cattle on Feed Data" in Dow Jones NewsPlus.

Write to Kirk Maltais at

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

06-21-24 1558ET