Top Studs: Who had the most successful Autumn sales?

18 April 2024
Banquet Tom Cruise T220 set the market alight went it went for $230,000.
An article by  Ed Dunlop

“Done-done”. The gavel falls to close the last of the 155 stud cattle sales interfaced or hosted by AuctionsPlus during the March quarter. All up, 5,804 stud bulls were sold nationwide for a total value of $54.6 million. Read on to see the standouts. 

Stud sales had an average bull clearance of 71%.  However, the majority of stud sales achieved bull clearance rates above the average. While 30% of studs had bull clearance rates above 90%, only 3% had clearance rates equal to or below 10%.   

Significant variation in prices and head was observed across breeds. Market conditions, breed, genetic merit, breeding objective, sentiment, stud reputation, marketing, and location can all influence demand. It’s horses for courses but preferences can be objectively compared by prices and size of the market.  

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As sales were mainly held in the south, Angus and Hereford breeds represented the largest share of bulls sold at 67% and 14% of overall head.

That is broadly consistent with MLA estimate of the Southern Female beef herd being approximately 68% Angus and 11% Hereford.  

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 Prices of European breeds were generally lower than British breeds, with the exception of Simmental. The differential could reflect producer preferences for British breeds (i.e. generally earlier maturity, high fertility and can fatten on less feed). Breeds such as Angus, well known to consumers and favoured by feedlots, can also fetch premiums.   
Simmental bulls achieved the highest average ($10,081), closely followed by Angus ($9,825) and Hereford ($9,025) bulls. The high average for Simmental bulls resulted from sales held by producers including Woonallee and Bonnydale. Lower averages were recorded for composite and less popular breeds, although fewer bulls were offered. For example, Speckle Parks averaged $4,444/head but only 26 bulls were offered across 3 sales.  

Market conditions are thought to impact overall level of bull prices by impacting the return producers receive for their livestock and thereby their capacity to purchase seedstock. 

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The top studs by revenue by breed

The south’s favourite breed dominated bull sales during the quarter, accounting for 67% of bulls sold and 70% of transaction value. 3,884 bulls were sold for an average price of $9,825/head. Banquet Angus, Rennylea and Coonamble had the highest sale average for Angus bulls. The average number of lots across five studs was 136 for a total of 684 bulls.


Screenshot 2024-04-18 at 4.11.07 PM Banquet Angus’ sale average was elevated by the sale of Banquet Tom Cruise T220 for $230,000. Tom Cruise T220 was the highest priced bull of any sale in Q1 2024.  

Banquet Tom Cruise T220


Herefords accounted for almost 15% of all Bulls sold in the quarter. Although prices were lower than Angus, the top Hereford sales all exceeded $10k on average. Sale clearance rates were generally lower at 59% compared with 78% for Angus. 315 bulls were sold by the top five producers, at an average of 63 head.

Screenshot 2024-04-18 at 4.11.23 PMYavenvale Trump Card T350 took the crown for the highest priced Hereford Bull for the quarter at $96,000.

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Yavenvale Trump Card T350


Simmentals represented 5% of total sales and were the third ranked breed by number of head sold.

This was primarily due to the large Woonallee Simmental Elite Production Sale which accounted for over a third of all Simmental bulls sold in the quarter.

That volume did not impact on quality, with the South Australian stud securing a Avg. price per head of $12,153, eclipsing the average prices of all the Hereford stud sales. 

242 bulls were sold across the top five producers.

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Bonnydale secured the top price for Simmentals in the quarter with Bonnydale Revenue U149 fetching $41,000 on 11 March.  

Next Quarter

The June Quarter typically has fewer bull offerings than the March or September Quarter. Last year, almost three thousand quality bulls were offered, notably Prime Pacific T29 from Prime Angus which sold for $86,000.



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