Rules and Terms of Trade for CMS Live Cattle Auction System

In addition to these Rules and Terms of Trade, your use of the CMS Live Cattle Auction System website is subject to the Terms and Conditions of the Cattle Marketing Services, Inc. website, which can be found on the home page. By creating an account, you agree to be bound by the Cattle Marketing Services, Inc. Terms and Conditions. By offering a listing and/or submitting a bid, you agree to be further bound by these Rules and Terms of Trade for CMS Live Cattle Auction System.

All Cattle offered for sale on this auction must be fed in a Feedyard facility within the United States. All cattle offered must be fed according to current labeling laws and be eligible for shipment and cleared of all approved antibiotics and feed additives/supplements according to the current requirements outlined by USDA. Cattle may or may not be fed approved feed additives, and buyers should check with each feedyard/seller to determine if lots are eligible for any special programs such as NHTC, Natural, Hormone Free, Angus programs, Age Verified programs and other Premium programs. Cattle Marketing Services, Inc. does not warrant or verify any claims or guarantee relating to any cattle, including but not limited to, any age verification or age at Harvest dates or eligibility for such programs. There are no implied warranties of merchantability or fitness of cattle by Cattle Marketing Services, Inc. All cattle shall be independently evaluated by potential buyers or potential buyer‘s representatives at their own discretion and risk to determine value and quality of each lot.

Cattle Marketing Services, Inc. is a registered, bonded Dealer with GIPSA, however, in the case of this Live Cattle Auction System, Cattle Marketing Services, Inc. is only offering the use of this website as a platform of bringing buyers and sellers together. Cattle Marketing Services, Inc. is not handling or clearing any funds associated with the offering and purchasing of the lots listed. Cattle Marketing Services, Inc. does not warrant any cattle, claims or omissions of listing by sellers, nor does it guarantee any funds or delivery of funds by buyers on this platform to sellers. Sellers are assuming all risk regarding payment of livestock in regard to transactions initiated on this platform, and by listing cattle, do hereby agree to hold Cattle Marketing Services, Inc. harmless on all claims regarding performance of contracts by both buyers and sellers after a transaction is initiated using this platform.

Cattle Marketing Services, Inc. will charge a per head fee of $1.00/head for the use of this platform to be paid by sellers upon listing cattle on this Auction. All sellers are required to create an account on Stripe, and all fees shall be deducted via ACH electronic transfer and/or the sellers Stripe account. By setting up an account and submitting a sales listing, you expressly authorize Cattle Marketing Services, Inc., to withdraw its appropriate fee through an ACH electronic transfer from your financial account or Stripe account.

All cattle/lots are to be uploaded by seller into the website by Monday of the week of trade by 12:00 noon CT. Buyers may pick up a showlist at each feedyard earlier than that time via arrangements directly with the feedyard.

First Bid/Carry the Bid Format

All cattle are eligible and automatically entered into the First Bid/Carry the Bid format for each week. The lead bid shall carry through the week. All bids shall begin new each Tuesday at 8:45AM ,Central Time Zone (CT), without regard to activity the previous week. The Auction shall open for activity each morning (Tuesday through Friday) at 8:45AM CT and close at 5:00 PM CT each day. Opening bids may be placed by buyers before Tuesday’s open at 8:45AM CT. Upon opening each day, the system will find the highest and “oldest” bid at that level, and that bid shall be the lead bid upon the open.

In the “carry the bid format”, any bidder may change their bid at any time up or down (even when the auction is closed) IE, after 5:00PM CT and before 8:45AM CT the next morning. In turn, any seller may change their asking price up or down at any time. At any time the high bid price exceeds the asking price, or the seller clicks “sell it now” at the current high bid during open trading hours a trade shall occur.

All bids shall have a 15 minute timer which starts upon submission of any new bid. During that 15 minute timer, the bid may not be removed or lowered by the buyer. This is to allow sellers time to evaluate the market, and or call customers to make a decision determining the bid.

Buyers may schedule to remove bids at the end of an active timer.

Buyers may not schedule a bid change to a lower price to occur during the timer. If a bid change for all bids is scheduled while a timer is running on an individual lot, that scheduled change shall not take effect. Buyers wanting to lower but not remove the bids during a timer, shall have to wait until the timer expires on each individual lot and then lower their bid if they so desire.

In the event buyer or seller prices are moved in non-trade hours and the bid price exceeds the asking price upon opening of the auction, the “bid price” shall be the trade price of the lot.

In the event there is no trade by Friday at 5:00PM CT, the auction shall remain closed until the following Tuesday. In the event CMS determines at its discretion, sufficient trading has not occurred for the week by Friday at 5:00 PM CDT, CMS does hereby reserve the right to extend Friday trading hours beyond 5:00 PM CDT, and or open trading Saturday from 8:00 AM CDT until 12:00 PM CDT to provide buyers and sellers sufficient opportunity for trade to occur. There shall be no trading on Sunday or Monday.

All lots not traded during the week, shall be automatically eligible to be “carried over” to the following week’s trade at no additional cost to the Seller.

Live Auction Format

This auction shall also have a live auction each Tuesday and Friday, beginning at 11:00AM CT. Assuming a seller wants to use the live auction, a seller may opt to sell any lot on their showlist which has not yet traded, by opting to offer it in that day’s live auction prior to 8:45AM CT, day of sale. Any lot which has not sold prior to the seller opting it into the live auction is eligible to participate in the live auction and upon exercising its option to move into the live auction format, it shall automatically be removed from eligibility from trade in the first bid/carry the bid format. In the event there was a lead bid in the Carry the bid format on a lot which opted into the auction, upon the start of the auction for that individual lot, the lead bidder from the Carry the bid format shall be given the option to renew or rescind his bid. If he chooses to rescind his bid, the starting bid shall become the floor price for the auction, or the seller established floor for that lot, whichever is lower.

In the event a lot does not sell in the Live Auction, (either does not meet the minimum bid or is “POed” by the seller), the lot is placed back to a pending state for the seller. Seller may then reenter the carry the bid showlist with that lot. Lots which do not sell in the Tuesday Auction will be eligible to reenter the Friday Live Auction if seller so chooses.

Upon entering the Live Cattle Auction format for any lot, seller may opt to use the “Platform Administrator Floor Price” for that day’s auction, or may choose to enter a lower price at their discretion. The “Platform Administrator Floor Price” shall be posted no later than 8:00AM CT on the day of the sale.

During the Live auction, any lot may be “Passed Out” or “PO’ed” by the seller if he chooses to not accept the high bid. In the event a lot is passed out, the seller does hereby agree to a penalty of $2.50/head payable to the high bidder. Cattle Marketing Services, Inc. shall withdraw the fee through an ACH electronic transfer from the seller’s financial account or Stripe account and transfer those funds to the high bidder. Sellers shall have 15 seconds from the end of the bidding on each lot, lot to establish that they will not accept the high bid, otherwise the trade shall stand. By “Passing Out” a lot, seller hereby agrees to allow Cattle Marketing Services, Inc. to initiate the transfer from your account for $2.50/Head.

The Auction Website shall automatically send a notification to all approved buyers on sale day at 9:00AM CT notifying them of cattle which shall sell via the Live Auction format for that day.

On Friday following the 5:00 PM CT closing times, sellers may start creating showlists for the following week.

Buyer Approval

All buyers must be approved buyers by Cattle Marketing Services, Inc. and must be a terminal user of livestock. In addition, any buyer must be bonded and in good standing with all regulations of GIPSA.

Following approval, buyer entities shall be placed on a “Potential Buyer List”. Each seller shall then have the right to approve or exclude all “Potential Buyers” based on their individual desires and opinions of risk/reward associated with the ability to pay and risk associated with selling to that buyer. If a buyer is not approved by that individual seller, the buyer will not be allowed access to bid on the lots listed by that individual seller. Final approval or exclusion of “Potential Buyers” is within the sole discretion of each seller.

General Terms

All cattle shall be sold with pickup by Saturday of the week following trade, unless otherwise agreed to by buyer and seller following the auction.

Trade shall occur in $ .25/CWT bid increments.

For purposes of confidentiality, bidder identity shall not be public to seller or other potential buyers on this platform format. Sellers shall be notified of buyer via email following each lot transaction notifying both buyer and seller a transaction has occurred.

By bidding on this auction, buyers and sellers do hereby agree to the terms listed in these Rules and Terms of Trade for this auction and the Terms and Conditions of the Cattle Marketing Services, Inc.’s website.

All cattle shall be sold with a 4% pencil shrink with an early morning weigh up. Any weighing conditions other than this must be agreed upon by buyer and seller by private arrangement. All cattle must be weighed on a certified scale.

All cattle are sold FOB at the Feedyard listing the cattle and all freight and transportation cost and arrangements shall be the responsibility of the buyer.

Heifers in this auction are not guaranteed to be open.

Cattle Marketing Services, Inc. reserves the right to change any of the terms, timelines, or trade days associated with this platform by notifying both buyers and sellers of changes prior to the start of a new trading week.

Any dispute, including but not limited to, offal, carcass quality, liver abscesses, injection sites, condemned cattle, crippled cattle, dark cutters and other issues related to the transactions of this auction, shall be resolved solely between buyer and seller. Cattle Marketing Services, Inc. makes no warranties, including but not limited to, warranties regarding kill results or carcass quality.

Days on feed shall be expressed as the number of days from the Average in Date to the current date.

Only registered buyers, and sellers with current listings, can view the Showlist Auction, Showlist Numbers, Average Asking Prices, and Average Bid Prices. The General Public will be eligible to view the Live Auction and non-entity descriptive, delayed market trade data at the discretion of the platform administration.

In the Showlist Auction Format, Feedyard listings shall only be able to view their individual lot listings, but will have instant access to all market data regarding sales of cattle by area, price, and feedyard quality rating.

Sale results of the live auction shall be available for Guests to view following the close of the auction until midnight on the day of the auction.

Cattle Marketing Services, Inc. reserves the right to refuse service and or access to this website and platform to anyone or any entity.

All sales are FOB the Listing Feedyard location.

All times regarding this site shall be based upon the established time and clock displayed on the Cattle Marketing Services, Inc. system.

Because Country of Origin is no longer required within the meat industry, it will not be defined under this platform. If Country of Origin is desired information of buyers, they will need to address that issue with each individual feedyard when acquiring and viewing the showlist at that feedyard.

Quality Rating System

What is the purpose of the Quality Rating System? Buyers and sellers are ask to provide their best estimate of approximate value vs the base market price (upon entering showlists for sellers, and prior to initial bid for buyers). Once entered, quality values may not be changed for the trading week. Upon the trade of a lot, each side of the system (buyers/sellers) will only report the quality rating established by its side removing any reason to not accurately attempt to describe the true quality of the cattle. This tool is designed to help both buyers and sellers provide greater transparency to the events of the market. Because sellers quality ratings are only shown to other sellers it gives the seller the ability to accurately give his opinion of the value of that lot vs the market. In reverse, on the buyers side of the system, the average quality rating of all buyers who entered a value for that lot shall be reported to the buyers side.

When the quality rating is reported to the general public, it is reported as the average of both the buyers and sellers side combined.

Different buyers value traits differently depending on their individual needs in the marketplace, so both buyers and sellers should remember that this is only a tool to help report the actual value of cattle traded. It also gives the market greater vision of transparency in an effort to spread pricing of differing qualities of cattle into different price levels. Our industry has long ago needed a way to show variation in value for both premium and lower quality cattle, and this effort will help move the industry in that direction.

Also, because no one knows who the bid is coming from, it gives buyers greater confidence to bid up for higher value lots, while allowing sellers the ability to value lower quality lots as such so when traded, they are not used as leverage to move the market lower.

How do I accurately decide what quality rating I should put on a lot?

Quality Rating 1: This would represent a pen expected to bring a large premium in the market. This would represent very high grading cattle during a large choice/select spread, or have extremely high yielding carcasses which are free from out cattle. These lots should be almost free of any out cattle including heavy or light carcasses, Yield grade 4,s and 5’s, standard or subpar grading cattle. This pen would be expected to return a large premium under current market conditions of +2.00 to +5.00/CWT if priced on a grid or formula trade.

Quality Rating 2: This would represent a pen expected to bring a small premium in the market (.50 to 1.00/CWT) which are above average in quality and or carcass yield and have a low percentage of out cattle.

Quality Rating 3: This would represent an average pen of cattle expected to bring the average market price.

Quality Rating 4: This would represent a pen you would expect to sell at a small discount to the market. This would include cattle that are plain or too large, have too much variation in size and or kind to bring the market or are subpar in grade or carcass yield vs the average lot sold at the market. This pen would typically bring a discount of -.50 to -1.00/CWT vs the average market price.

Quality Rating 5: This would represent a pen expected under current market conditions to bring a sizable discount to the market of -2.50 to -12.00/CWT vs the average market price. This pen could be a variation from Holsteins to Heiferetts. This could also be a pen of extremely large average weight or a pen with age or carcass maturity issues.

Frequently Ask Questions

What can a Guest View on the auction? If you are not a registered and approved buyer or seller on the auction, you will not have access to the trading site. However, upon the completion of each Live auction and individual lots sales results by region will be available to the general public to provide transparency to the market.

What can a buyer view on the auction? A buyer will be able to view all seller’s lot on the Showlist Auction if they have been approved by the seller, and all lots Live Auction. However, unapproved buyers will not have bidding access to feedyards which have not approved them as a buyer. This gives great access to information for buyers, which is why they must be approved by the administration before they can even have access to the site.

What can a Seller view on the Auction? Sellers will be able to view their own Showlist Auction Listings, but no other feedyards listings. Active Sellers may also view the Live Auction.

How do I become a buyer? You will need to fill out a buyer registration, and then be approved by the system administrator and you will then have access to the sight as a buyer. In order to bid on a lot, the seller will have to approve you as a buyer for their feedyard.

How do I become a seller? You will need to fill out a seller registration, be approved as a seller, and complete the ACH account information.

If I want to , how do I trade cattle after trading hours? If a buyer wishes to trade their cattle after the Showlist Auction is closed for the day, or on weekends, they will need to trade them private treaty and remove them from the Auction Site by “Deleting” each pen they sell. We do not recommend sellers trade after hours, as it inhibits the industry from going back to a business day time frame. If all sellers will adhere to selling during business hours (Tuesday-Friday 8:45AM CT to 5:00PM CT), it will eliminate night and weekend trading.

How is the order of the live auction determined? Each seller shall have one lot each in randomized order beginning at the start of the auction. Each seller in the same order shall have one lot in the last lots on the auction, in reverse order. (IE, if there are 15 sellers with at least 2 lots each, whoever sells 1st in the auction, shall sell 15th from last at the end of the auction). Lots are then computer randomized in the middle of the auction. This is done to insure the fairest order of the auction, so that no one would be selling first and last in the same auction.

As a seller, how will I know if I have a new bid? When setting up your seller account, you will have the option to receive text alerts when you have a “hot” 15 minute new bid on a pen.

How will I be alerted to movement or trades occurring in the market? Both buyers and sellers will have the option to be notified by text when the first 5 lots are traded in their region each day. Both buyers and sellers can check the website for new trades at any time, as they are posted immediately to the sales reports page.

As a buyer, how will I know if my high bid is still good? When setting up your buyer account, you will have the option to receive text alerts when you have been outbid on a lot if you were the lead bidder.