USDA sees smaller soy crop in 2019, more corn

MarketsFarm — U.S. farmers will grow more corn and fewer soybeans in 2019, according to the first production estimates of the year from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Ending stocks of both crops are expected to remain large.

U.S. soybean production for 2019-20 was forecast at 4.15 billion bushels by the government agency, which would be down by nine per cent from the previous year and at the lower end of trade estimates.

Meanwhile, corn production is expected to increase by four per cent, to 15.03 billion bushels.

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Total U.S. wheat production is forecast to be relatively steady on the year, up by less than one per cent at 1.897 billion bushels.

Soybean ending stocks for 2018-19 were raised to 995 million bushels, from an expected 985 million in April. The 2019-20 carryout is forecast at 970 million.

U.S. corn ending stocks for the current marketing year were raised by 60 million, to 2.095 billion bushels. The 2019-20 carryout of 2.485 billion bushels topped the high end of trade guesses.

Wheat ending stocks in the country are forecast to rise to 1.141 billion bushels by the end of the 2019-20 marketing year, from an anticipated 1.127 million in 2018-19.

On the world stage, e USDA raised its South American corn production estimates, pegging Argentina’s crop at 49 million tonnes and Brazil’s at 100 million. That compares with the April estimates of 47 million and 96 million respectively.

Brazil’s soybean production estimate was left unchanged at 117 million tonnes, while USDA raised its prediction for Argentina’s soy crop by one million tonnes, to 56 million.

World wheat carryout for 2019-20 is forecast by USDA to rise to 293 million tonnes, from 275 million in 2018-19. Soybean stocks are forecast to hold steady at around 113 million bushels, while 2019-20 world corn ending stocks at just under 315 million tonnes are projected to tighten by about 11 million bushels.

— Phil Franz-Warkentin writes for MarketsFarm, a Glacier FarmMedia division specializing in grain and commodity market analysis and reporting.

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