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USDA data & soybean progress
This week featured one of the biggest USDA reports of the year, the October Crop Production report. The numbers provided some breathing room in the corn and soybean supply chains, sending the trade lower.
We had a chance to tag along with USDA-NASS staff as they went into the field to conduct ear and pod counts for Wednesday's reports.
Meanwhile, fueled by mostly hot, dry weather in the Midwest, farmers made major strides in corn and soybean harvest last week, moving just ahead of the normal pace for this week in corn while registering a double-digit gain in soybean harvest.
But, that hot and dry weather has fueled field fires around the Corn Belt. It's prompting many to double-check their fire safety procedures in the field.
There's another thing 'hot' these days: Ag company stocks. Stock-watchers said they expect a few ag companies, like Deere, Monsanto and ADM, would be "actively traded" in the next week.
Back in the States, a recent survey in Nebraska shows the value of irrigation to land prices. Land with "potential for irrigation development" in that state has risen 105% in the last 5 years.
This fall's corn harvest hasn't exactly been a bin-buster everywhere, and those lower yields are expected to tighten margins in another sector that's already felt a lot of pains in the last few years, the dairy industry.
Despite the pains in the dairy sector, things are looking good in the hog industry, and one economist says the trend of improving hog profits is likely to continue in the next year.
Big USDA Crop Progress numbers and major harvest strides highlight this week's big ag news.