Latest cattle market update


The latest insights and information on the Australian cattle market as of January 2024.

Market fundamentals

National restocker steer prices strengthened at the end of 2023, up by nearly 30 per cent (pc) overall to 370 c/kg lwt. Prices are up across all states this month, by 25 pc in Queensland and 26 pc in New South Wales. In the west, a softer increase of 8 pc was recorded.

Restocker steer prices increased again in December.

Read on for local conditions and commentary from Elders Livestock Managers. For more livestock market insights, head across to Livestock Now.

From the field

“In the markets at the moment, we are seeing a strong lift in cattle. 

“We are seeing big demand across feeders, restockers and also meatworks cattle at the moment, and that that is off the back of a terrific season. 

“There are patches up here that haven’t got the rain, but there is a lot of country that is enjoying a good season, and hopefully those gaps will start to fill in.”- Garry Cartwright, State Livestock Manager, southern Queensland.

“The cattle market continues to strengthen with the processor arket now following the store market trend upwards.” - Damien Webb, State Livestock Manager, northern South Australia. 

“Tasmania has had a positive turnaround on the back of improved seasonal conditions over this last month, with widespread significant rain over most parts of the state, particularly in the finishing areas of the state.

“King Island is the one area in the state that is having difficult seasonal conditions due to a lack of rain, which is very unusual.

“The shift in the season Australia wide has slowed down the availability of prime stock to processors, whether sheep, lamb or cattle,  and also painted a positive picture to restockers with green grass in the paddock.

“This in turn has created an appetite for restockers to return to the saleyards, AuctionPlus or private treaty sales for any livestock available.

“The improved seasonal conditions has then created and improvement in pricing by up to 30 pc in some cases for store cattle and lambs back to the paddock over the last six to eight weeks.

“Overall a lot more positivity in livestock in Tasmania.” - Gavin Coombe, State Livestock Manager, Tasmania.

“The narrative in Western Australia has certainly turned for the positive in the last six to eight weeks. 

“We are receiving a lot of enquiries for sheep and cattle coming out of the east, and we are steadily seeing improvements for growers in prices. The cattle market is improving gradually.” - Dean Hubbard, State Livestock Manager, Western Australia.

Read out the great results at the Elders Boyanup Beef Female Sale last week.

Market Indicators

Table contains restocker steer prices.

Note: States without sufficient data for the current month or without data for a specific stock category will not appear in the table.

Sources: Price data reproduced courtesy of Meat & Livestock Australia Limited.

The information contained in this article is given for the purpose of providing general information only, and while Elders has exercised reasonable care, skill and diligence in its preparation, many factors (including environmental and seasonal) can impact its accuracy and currency. Accordingly, the information should not be relied upon under any circumstances and Elders assumes no liability for any loss consequently suffered. If you would like to speak to someone for tailored advice relating to any of the matters referred to in this article, please contact Elders.

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