The stocker calf price tracker spreadsheet, created by economist Derrell Peel, combines a value of gain analyzer with a price-spread predictor.
Beef Producer is offering this program as a free download.
This is an Excel spreadsheet with two tabs which are completely interactive. This spreadsheet is available for download in the web exclusives section of www.BeefProducer.com.
To see value of gain numbers this spreadsheet will generate, you'll need to enter real prices from a nearby cattle market in the value of gain analyzer.
The Stocker Price Tracker Spreadsheet helps you determine value of gain and find opportunities in stocker-calf price structure.
You'll need the actual price and weight of a range of feeder calves, preferably from a conglomeration of markets near to you. Peel often uses the seven-market average from the Oklahoma City branch of the Agriculture Marketing Service, which is report KO LS794. The AMS site has several regional reports. Larger numbers should give more accuracy.
Value of gain is a tricky proposition these days, with cattle prices at record highs and rollbacks frighteningly wide. This calculator should help show the possibilities.
Note you can put up to four weeks of prices into this value-of-gain calculator and it will average them together. Peel says when markets are volatile he typically uses only one week of data.
Once your market-reported numbers are input, you will see the data imputed into 50-pound weight increments in column K and a corresponding price for each weight in column Q on the spreadsheet.
Further to the right you'll see value of gain estimates for various beginning weights, listed across the top, and various finishing weights as they are listed on the left. These help predict your value of gain.
For example, in the chart with this story, using Oklahoma City steer market prices from mid September, you'll see a calf with a beginning weight of 500 and an ending weight of 700 has a value of gain of $1.60 per pound. Keep that same calf until he weighs 900 and the value of gain is $1.39 per pound, assuming future cash prices are the same.
For the price spread estimator you need to enter a feedlot cost-of-gain number in the yellow box which resides on the second tab. This gives you the expected price spread in near-future terms, using Peel's formulas.
It also shows in graphic form whether there is significant difference between real market prices and the prices feedlot value of gain should produce in the marketplace. These should represent opportunities for stocker operators and feeders.
To use this, feedlot cost of gain numbers are best obtained from a source such as Professional Cattle Consultants, which combines the records from hundreds of cattle feeders in its database. If that is not possible, the next best option may be Peel's chart on the price of cash corn and the resulting probable feedlot cost of gain as it appears with this story or in the November issue of Beef Producer.
The chart which appears on this tab gives you a visual on the difference between the current price spread and the projected price spread using the feedlot cost-of-gain relationship.
To use the spreadsheet once you download it, the bright yellow boxes are the ones which must be filled in.