Aug 20, 2014
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Farmland Forecast

RSS By: Marc Schober, AgWeb.com

Marc Schober is the editor of Farmland Forecast an educational blog devoted to investments in agriculture and farmland.

Corn vs. Soybeans, the Battle for Acreage

Jun 30, 2014

Soybean planted acreage was estimated 3.30 million acres more than the already record estimate from the March 31st Planting report. Increased moisture and favorable economics have forced operators to plant soybeans at corn's expense.

Pockets of the Corn Belt, predominantly the northwest Corn Belt, have received over half their average yearly rainfall in just two short weeks. As the corn planting window disappeared, operators switched to soybeans; all was not lost as soybean prices were trading at 2.5 times or greater compared to corn.

Acreage Report

Crop

Estimated 2014 Planted Acres (Million Acres)

Final 2013 Planted Acres (Million Acres)

Corn

91.6

95.37

Soybeans

84.8

76.53

Wheat

56.5

56.16

Source: USDA

Planted corn acres for 2014 were estimated at its lowest level since 2010, 91.6 million acres, 3.77 million acres below the final 2013 planted acreage.

Soybean planted acres were estimated at 84.8 million, a 10.8% increase from last year's final planted acres of 76.53 million. The USDA estimated a record 84.1 million acres will be harvested, which would demolish the previous record of 76.7 million acres.

All wheat planted acres were estimated at 56.5 million, an increase of less than 1% from 2013. Winter wheat planted acres were estimated at 42.2 million, a 2% decrease year over year.

Quarterly Stocks

Crop

USDA (Billion Acres)

Analysts Range (Billion Acres)

Average Estimate (Billion Acres)

Corn

3.850

3.046-4.050

3.724

Soybeans

0.405

0.334-0.450

0.387

Wheat

0.590

0.561-0.715

0.603

Source: DTN and USDA

USDA reported 3.85 billion bushels of corn on hand as of June 1, 2014, a 39% increase year over year. Of the total stocks, 1.86 billion bushels were stored on farms, up 48% from 2013. Off-farm stocks were estimated at 1.99 billion bushels, an increase of 32% from a year earlier. The March 2014 to May 2014 disappearance was 3.15 billion bushels, compared to 2.63 billion bushels a year ago.

Soybean stocks decreased 7% compared to last year with 405 million bushels stored in all positions as of June 1, 2014. Stocks stored on farms totaled 109 million bushels, a 36% decrease from last year. Off-farm stocks increased to 296 million bushels, up 12% from last June. March 2014 to May 2014 disappearance was 589 million bushels, an increase of 4% from last year.

All old crop wheat stocks decreased by 18% from last year with 590 million bushels being estimated on June 1, 2014. On-farm stocks were estimated at 97 million bushels, a 19% decrease from last June. Off-farm stocks were down 18% from last year, coming in at 493 million bushels. The March 2014 to May 2014 disappearance was 467 million bushels, down 10% from June of 2013.

Outlook

Most will look forward to the World Agriculture Supply and Demand Estimates in July to see a more accurate assessment of the severe weather and rain that has been affecting the upper Midwest throughout June. The USDA reported acres that have been flooded for much of the past two weeks as "planted", similar to the USDA counting prevent plant acres planted in 2013 in their June acreage totals. The result will be a delay in market reaction as traders wait to see what kind of damage was caused by the June storms.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration estimate above average rain fall in their 30 and 90 day outlooks for Nebraska and South Dakota. Hopefully wet areas of Iowa, Illinois, Minnesota, and Wisconsin will be provided with an opportunity to dry out but there is little confidence that it will be in time for farmers to replant drowned out areas.

For more articles on agriculture and farmland, visit www.farmlandforecast.com 

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