USDA grain forecasts below expectations

by Ron Sterk
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WASHINGTON — Key numbers in the US Department of Agriculture Oct. 10 Crop Production and World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates reports were below the average of pre-report expectations from the trade. Still, corn and soybean futures prices declined while wheat futures posted gains after the reports were released.

US 2014 corn production was forecast at 14,475 million bushels, up 80 million bushels from 14,395 million bushels forecast in September and up 4 percent from 13,925 million bushels in 2013. Based on Oct. 1 conditions, corn yield was forecast at 174.2 bushels an acre, up 2.5 bushels from September and up 15.4 bushels from 158.8 bushels an acre in 2013, the USDA said. Harvested area was forecast at 83,097,000 acres, down 1 percent from September and down 5 percent from 2013.

Soybean production was forecast at 3,927 million bushels, up 14 million bushels from 3,913 million bushels forecast in September and up 17 percent from an upwardly revised 3,358 million bushels last year. Soybean yield was forecast at 47.1 bushels an acre, up 0.5 bushels from September and up 3.1 bushels from an upwardly revised 44 bushels an acre in 2013. Harvested area was forecast at 83,403,000 acres, down less than 1 percent from September but up 9 percent from 2013.

The USDA corn production and yield numbers were below the average pre-report trade estimate of 14,523 million bushels and 174.7 bushels an acre, respectively. The soybean numbers also were below the pre-report trade averages of 3,977 million bushels for production and 47.6 bushels per acre.

If realized, corn and soybean production and average yields all would be record high, the USDA said.

US corn carryover on Sept. 1, 2015, was projected at 2,081 million bushels, up 79 million bushels, or 4 percent, from September and up 845 million bushels, or 68 percent, from an upwardly revised 1,236 million bushels on Sept. 1, 2014. The U.S.D.A. 2015 projection was below the trade average forecast of 2,144 million bushels.

US soybean carryover on Sept. 1, 2015, was projected at 450 million bushels, down 25 million bushels, or 5 percent, from 475 million bushels projected in September but up 358 million bushels from a downwardly revised 92 million bushels on Sept. 1, 2014. The USDA 2015 projection was below the trade average forecast near 478 million bushels.
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