Competition sees prices of Â¤2.50/kg in Tullamore
Trade at Tullamore Mart was described as being "on fire" this week when stock made up to €2.50/kg as farmers competed with each other to secure stock.
"We'd a huge crowd -- up by 50pc at least -- for a total entry of nearly 300 head of stock," said mart manager Antoinette Daly.
"They're coming from everywhere, as far away as Monaghan. It just seems as if stock are seriously scarce still.
"There is definitely a feeling that men, young and old, are happier ploughing money into livestock than keeping it in the banks or anywhere else.
The good trade was reflected in marts across the country this week, with numbers on offer relatively tight but no shortage of buyers.
The top prices last Thursday went for three 282kg Charolais-cross heifers that made €259/kg -- or €448 over the weight -- while three Belgian Blue-cross heifers weighing in at 596kg each made €253/kg.
The average price for the light heifers up to 300kg was €1.92/kg, while heavier lots weighing up to 500kg made €1.73/kg. Beef heifers of more than 500kg averaged €1.81-1.89/kg.
The average for bullocks up to 300kg in weight was €2.13/kg, while stock up to 500kg averaged €1.74-1.77/kg.