The latest Cattle on Feed report from the USDA was published on 20 December and is normally available on every third Friday throughout the year. However, with the partial government shutdown not yet resolved, the USDA has not made the figures available so far this year.
The seasonal trend tends to rise until mid February / March and then taper off. The numbers on feed this year are about half a million head higher than one year ago (see chart below) and this will mean that the ample supply of hides will continue.
There is good demand for beef worldwide and so rising slaughter will continue to provide more hides that will weigh on the market until leather demand shows signs of picking up.
Information courtesy of USDA