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Heavy harvest

Agriculture.com Staff 11/06/2009 @ 8:18am

It is hard to imagine that the first week of November will probably be the heaviest harvest week of the 2009 crop year. Breezy, sunny, dry weather has allowed combines to run in the Corn Belt and in the Delta. Also, the forecasts continue to show fairly dry weather as some systems that were showing on the maps now appear to be a bust.

With two private crop estimates (Informa and FCStone) out this week, and reports of active bean harvest (with farmers letting corn dry in the field), soybean prices took the big hit yesterday. The crop estimates were significantly higher than the USDA's October number and would provide an increase in carryout regardless of what sort of export figure is used.

This year, the USDA numbers have typically been smaller than private estimates. So this month, maybe analysts are trying another approach. This time the "average trade guess" for both the corn and bean crops is pretty small. While there are certainly reasons for small numbers (soybean losses in the Delta, crop maturity issues and mold/disease damage in the corn), yesterday's private estimates are some of the largest numbers out there.

The November report may very well leave a dissatisfied taste in traders' mouths. The slow pace of harvest means the data will not be as accurate as in the past. But it will be a long time until the final January crop report, which will be released on January 12, 2010. Surprises may still be ahead.

The risk of loss in trading commodities can be substantial. You should therefore carefully consider whether such trading is suitable for you in light of your financial situation.

It is hard to imagine that the first week of November will probably be the heaviest harvest week of the 2009 crop year. Breezy, sunny, dry weather has allowed combines to run in the Corn Belt and in the Delta. Also, the forecasts continue to show fairly dry weather as some systems that were showing on the maps now appear to be a bust.

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