Cattle: There were fewer numbers at the opening Inverell sale for 2018 to yard 1035. Yearling numbers reduced by 400 head, while all other categories were static on pre-Christmas numbers. Quality was mixed, but good lines of feeder cattle came forward and competition was strong with the usual feeder orders present. All but one processor was present and active. Vealers were in short supply and trends were cheaper. There were no steers last sale day and heifers were 10c to 12c/kg easier. Quality was poor early in the sale and yearling steers showed cheaper trends, however as the sale progressed quality improved to see steers show firm to dearer trend of 7c/kg the light feeders. Medium weight steers improved to sell 10c dearer and the heavy weights were 3c/kg better. Most steers filled feeder and restocker orders. Light heifers sold to slightly cheaper trends, medium weights sold 6c/kg easier to feeders and minimum numbers sold to the trade. There were no grown steers to quote, but heifers showed cheaper trends of 10c to 16c/kg. The best cows showed firm to slightly cheaper trends of 2c to 4c with the light end also 4c/kg back. Bulls were cheaper.
Sheep: Inverell penned 1,200 lambs and 1,700 grown sheep, including Dorper’s, 1,540 head less than last day. There was an overall reduction in price, however dry weather and quality were major factors in the decline. All the regular buyers were in attendance and operating. Limited numbers and a decline in quality of young lambs resulted in cheaper prices for these categories. There were some very good pens of crop assisted lambs. This resulted in prices firm to slightly cheaper on last day. Heavy lambs showed cheaper trends of up to $10/head easier on pre-Christmas sales. Old trade lambs showed cheaper trends of up to $11/head. Restockers pushed first cross ewe hoggets to $160, while trade prices eased $10 to $15/head. Merino ewes showed cheaper trends, again quality being a factor. Both ewes and wethers showed cheaper prices of up to $12/head.