Just a scoop full
By Jerry Nine
(April 3)—It is amazing how much better the cattle market is after the grain report came out a couple of weeks ago. I kept thinking we were over doing the cattle market when it started falling, causing lots of cattlemen to lose faith fast. I think a lot of that came from these huge losses we have had in the cattle feeding business. The cattleman selling feeder cattle had done quite well for two or three years but just recently were barely getting the first cost back when selling feeders, as they cost a lot as calves.
The grain report that came out was a stock report and intentions on planting. There was expected to be a little over 5 billion bushels on hand and we showed 5.39 billion bushels of corn, which is close to 400 million bushels more corn on hand than they thought. It also showed intentions to plant more corn acres than they have ever since the ’30s. Some of this might change a little with the two days following this report corn fell 93 cents per bushel. That is great news for cattlemen and not so great for farmers.
These cost of gains have been high, plus battling a drought for the last two years has made it very challenging with hay and forage high.
If I don’t make my banker nervous it is simply because his nerves are made of steel. I don’t have a lot of minerals under that land I have bought because I was born 20 years too late to get them with the land. But that’s all right because Lord only knows I do not want to be any older. I had told this man when I bought the land that I wanted to buy the minerals if he ever wanted to sell them, and of course he calls and wants to whenever cattle have not made any money and I am up to the limit and probably overdrawn at the bank. So I called my secretary and said, “Do we have any money in the sale barn account?” I was kinda joking and kinda not when I said, “Do you think my banker would notice if I used that money to pay for those minerals and just accidentally forgot to tell him?” She assured me that he was paying attention, so I went to Plan B. I called my banker and asked that much dreaded question a banker dreads—at least from me: “Are you sitting down?” I imagine from me that scares him to death. And fortunately for me, if you owe as much money as I owe, you’re in so deep they can’t say no. But it could be worse so my banker should be thankful because I could bring in my keys to several worn-out vehicles and the sale barn key and tell him to call me when the four boys are raised and doing good. No wonder he said to go ahead.
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