What goes up, must come down.
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That was the case for feedlot margins last week. After increasing for three consecutive weeks, feedlot margins finished the week ending Sept. 20 at $186.37 per head, down more than $45 from the previous week, according to the latest data from the Sterling Profit Tracker. While lower week-over-week, feedlot margins are more than $143 higher per head than they were last year at this time.

Fed cattle also took a turn south last week, ending at $157.57, compared to $160.47 per hundredweight the previous week. Fed cattle, despite being down last week, are still enjoying a more than $33 per hundredweight advantage compared to prices earned last year at this time. Though feeders were also down last week, they took less of a hit, falling just 31 cents to $226.88 per hundredweight. At this time last year, feeders were bringing $156.38. The breakeven price for last week’s feedlot placements was $167.12, compared to $127.08 at this time last year.