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Soybeans battle the 'bears'

11/07/2012 @ 10:21am

Soybeans, and to a lesser extent corn, have come under selling pressure lately, as we warned last week in our weekly commentary.  

Indeed, private estimates of 2012 crop size continue to come in larger than the October report from USDA for both corn and soybeans, and South America weather has improved as we indicated last week.  Recent private estimates of US yields for the November USDA report showed improvements in both corn and soybeans, with Informa at 122.4 bu/acre corn (up 0.4 bu/acre from USDA October), and soybeans at 38.6 bu/acre (vs. USDA Oct. at 37.8 bu/acre).  FC Stone numbers were at 124 bu/acre corn and 39.1 bu/acre soybeans.  Pro Ag estimates are at 39 bu/acre soybeans, but our corn estimate is lower in November at 123 bu/acre, up only 1 bu/acre from October.   USDA is still too low on ND (who probably has record large corn yields in 2012 with the Pro Ag estimate 135 bu/acre vs. 115 from USDA in Oct.) and MN, but recently they have just cut ILL yields to offset any changes in northern Plains yields.  

Pro Ag would not be surprised to see northern Corn Belt states corn and soybean yields hiked in this report.  ND farmers will 

really cash in for 2012, with a record large crop of wheat, corn, soybeans, and many minor crops along with a record high price! US harvest progress is rolling along at very strong levels, much ahead of the normal level in almost all crops.  The corn harvest is now at 95% complete vs. 71% normally.  

Soybean harvest is 93% complete vs. 86% normally.  Sorghum is 78% harvested vs. 70% normally, as with corn and soybean harvest nearly complete, farmers can focus on finishing up sorghum harvest.  

Sugarbeets are 91% harvested vs. 92% normally, and sunflowers are 88% harvested vs. 60% normally.  

Overall, it has been a great harvest for US crops, with early harvesting of virtually dry crops (a lot due to the dry/warm weather this summer).  Winter wheat is 92% planted vs. 90% normally, with germination now catching up to normal at 73% vs. 74% normally.  But conditions declined as Pro Ag predicted as little rain fell in winter heat country last week, so that we dropped 1% in conditions to 39% G/E.  The winter wheat belt is in need of more rain, and little is really forecast for western HRW wheat areas which are the driest.  

The US election took place Tuesday, with Democrats holding the White House and Senate in spite of a pathetic economy, with tight margins of victory in the US Presidential race.  That will likely boost commodities as a more inflationary policy, with larger deficit spending is likely to occur over the next 4 years.  However, with our poor economy currently, that may be appropriate for now while the economy is still so fragile.  

Pro Ag remains bearish, as the market still continues to struggle with larger soybean production forecasts in the US, recent more favorable weather in South America to get wheat, corn, and soybeans growing in relatively good conditions, and the trends for grains lower.  Export demand for corn and wheat also continues to be pathetic, with very slow export sales and shipments of both corn and wheat.  Soybean exports are stronger, which is expected as the US is the only source in the world for soybeans right now as South America is about sold out.  But with current South American growing season weather improving, that worry may not continue long.  Pro Ag is most bearish corn and soybeans right now as winter wheat continues to be rated poorly in the US, with little precip forecast for winter wheat areas.  However, we continue to forecast lows for this fall, with our near term targets for price lows this fall at $6.735 Dec. corn and $14 Nov. soybeans.

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