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USDA Pushes Up Soybean Numbers

USDA Pushes Up Soybean Numbers

Highly anticipated crop report shows rise in soybean and cotton numbers, and a small slip for corn.

The October 11, 2012 USDA Crop Production report will cause a stir in the markets today as USDA forecasts corn production at 10.7 billion bushels, only down slightly from the September forecast. While trade observers claim the agency isn't taking into account abandoned acres, and all the corn chopped for silage, this is the most current figure available.

MARKET REACT: Prices jumped even with bearish news, but the tale of the tape will be at market close later today, where true assessment of the numbers will be determined.

Based on the report, this will be the lowest corn crop since 2006 and is expected to average 122 bushels per acre, down 0.8 bushels from the September forecast, and 25.2 bushels below the 2011 average. This would be the lowest average yield since 1995. Area harvested for corn is estimated at 87.7 million acres, up less than 1% from September, and up 4% from 2011 - this is a number widely contested by trade observers. USDA reports that acreage updates were made in several states "based on administrative data."

Soybean production is forecast at 2.86 billion bushels, that’s a 9% rise over the September estimate, but down 8% from last year. Based on October 1 condition, USDA says yields are expected to average 37.8 bushels per acre, up 2.5 bushels from last month, but down 4.1 bushels from last year. Yield forecasts are higher, or unchanged, across all soybean producing states and the area harvested is estimated at 75.7 million acres, up 1% from September and 3% from last year. These estimates were made using the same approach as for corn acres.

For cotton, production is forecast at 17.3 million 480-pound bales, up 1% from last month and 11% from last year. Yield is expected to hit 795 pounds per acre, up 5 pounds from last year. Upland cotton production is forecast at 16.6 million 480-pound bales, up 13% from 2011. Pima cotton production, forecast at 657,000 bales, was carried forward from last month.

Check out complete analysis of today's numbers in Bryce Knorr's Morning Market Review.

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