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Corn crop ratings keep falling

08/08/2011 @ 3:48pm

USDA released market-neutral to friendly corn crop ratings and market-negative soybean data Monday.

In its weekly Crop Progress Report, the USDA estimates the U.S. corn crop as 60% good/excellent, 24% fair, and 16% very-poor to poor.

Meanwhile, the U.S. soybean crop is rated as 13% very-poor to poor, 26% fair, 61% good-to-excellent.

"I think the ratings are seen market-neutral/friendly to the corn, with a ratings drop of 2%. For soybeans, the overall rating jumped 1%, making the Monday report negative towards the market, Jason Ward, Northstar Commodity Investment Co. analyst says.

Meanwhile, Tim Hannagan, PFGBest.com senior grain analyst says the trade expects a conservative Crop Progress Report. "The government doesn’t want to give the market a bullish shock creating inflationary concerns."


With the exception of Michigan, the eastern Corn Belt states continue to see crop ratings fall. 

In Monday's Report, the western Corn Belt states had mixed ratings, with Iowa, Missouri, and Kansas showing declines, while Nebraska, Minnesota, South Dakota and North Dakota unchanged to slightly better.

"For corn, the U.S good/excellent rating is 60% vs. 71% last year. The trade is quick to compare year-on-year ratings," Ward says. "USDA posted 165.2 bushel/acre yield in August report last year, this year something less. Trade expectations are around 155 bushels/acre."

Ward adds, "Rainfall is needed this week or conditions will continue to decline next week."

Because of recent rains, there is little disagreement with the USDA's improved soybean rating. "I thought the ECB would decline further on soybeans than it did, but the WCB beans definitely look better. Still need rain, though, but ratings were about as expected."

Other Ratings

The USDA estimates 32% of the U.S. corn crop is in the 'dough' stage, compared to 49% a year ago and a 38% five-year average. Also, 93% of the crop has reached 'silting', below 97% a year ago. And, the government reports that 7% of the corn crop is in the 'dented' stage, vs. 14% a year ago and A 10% five-year average.

For soybeans, 51% of the U.S. crop is setting pods, compared to 69% a year ago and a 63% five-year average. Also, 87% of the soybeans are blooming, below 92% a year ago.

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