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Abstract

Conventional wisdom and earlier research have concluded that cattle feeding profitability is more determined by feeder and fed cattle prices than by animal performance. This study examined cross-sectional and time-series data from over 1600 pens of cattle in more than 220 feedlots in the upper Midwest where weather and lot conditions are thought to influence feedlot profitability. In addition to input and output prices and animal performance, other factors found to significantly impact cattle feeding profitability were sex, placement weight, facility design, and to a lesser extent placement season.

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