CONSULTANT RAISES U.S. YIELD PEGS... Crop consultant Dr. Michael Cordonnier has raised his U.S. corn and soybean yield estimates to reflect ongoing better-than-expected yield results. He raised his corn yield estimate by 2 bu. per acre to 156 bu., but lowered his corn harvested acreage to 87.6 million, which is 1.5 million acres less than USDA's current estimate. He now pegs the U.S. corn crop at 13.67 billion bushels.
Meanwhile, Dr. Cordonnier left his harvested soybean acreage estimate unchanged but raised his yield estimate by 0.5 bu. per acre to 41.5 bu. for a crop of 3.17 billion bushels.
SOYBEAN PLANTING PICKS UP IN BRAZIL... Dr. Cordonnier says improved weather has resulted in an increase in soybean planting across Brazil, with about 40% to 45% of the crop planted nationwide. He says Parana leads the way with around 60% planted and Mato Grosso has around half of the crop in the ground after a record-setting week of planting.
Dr. Cordonnier left his Brazilian soybean estimate unchanged at 88 MMT, but says he has a neutral to higher bias going forward as farmers may decide to add more soybean acres.
Meanwhile, full-season corn planting in Brazil is nearly complete and the crop is off to a good start. Since Dr. Cordonnier lowered his Brazilian corn peg last week, he left it unchanged at 70 MMT, but says he has a neutral to lower bias going forward. "If anything, the safrinha corn acreage might be reduced even more than what is already anticipated due to farmers planting alternative crops in Mato Grosso and more winter wheat in Parana," he says.
SOYBEAN PLANTING BEGINS IN ARGENTINA... Dr. Cordonnier says the weather has improved in Argentina, although dry pockets still persist in Cordoba and Santa Fe. He says soybean planting is in its early stages at around 3% to 4% done, with corn planting around 28% to 30% complete.
"Soybean planting is getting started a little slower than normal due to dry weather earlier in October, but at this point, the delayed start should not impact the eventual soybean yield if the weather cooperates," he says.
Dr. Cordonnier left his Argentine soybean estimate unchanged at 55 MMT, and says he has a neutral to higher bias going forward due to the potential for more corn acres being switched to soybeans. He left his Argentine corn estimate unchanged at 25 MMT, but says he has a neutral to lower bias due to potential acreage shifts.
ADM SAYS OILSEED BUSINESS AND ETHANOL MARGINS LIFT BUSINESS... Archer Daniels Midland Company today said strength in its oilseeds business and improved ethanol margins helped to produce solid operating results, despite the lingering effects of the 2012 U.S. drought. For the third quarter that ended Sept. 30, 2013, the company reported adjusted earnings per share of $ 0.46, down from $0. 53 in the same period last year. Net earnings for the quarter were $476 million, or $0.72 per share, up from $0.28 per share in the same period one year earlier. Segment operating profit was $606 million, down 6% when excluding an impairment charge from the year-ago quarter. Click here for more.
INCREASED CHECKS FOR U.S. BEEF IMPORTS TO TAIWAN AFTER ZILPATEROL DETECTION... Taiwan's Food and Drug Administration today said it found the food additive zilpaterol (Zilmax) in U.S. beef. This is the third such occurrence in Asian countries in less than a month. Therefore, Taiwan officials are increasing scrutiny on imports of U.S. meat as Taiwan and many other Asian nations have a zero-tolerance policy on beta agonist feed additives. Earlier this month South Korea suspended some beef imports from a unit of JBS USA after finding traces of the feed additive.
SOME DELAYED CONSERVATION PROGRAM PAYMENTS TO ARRIVE SOON... Farmers waiting for their Conservation Security or Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) payments should receive them in the coming days. The shutdown of the federal government delayed some of the $907 million in payments from USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) to CSP participants. To date, farmers, ranchers and forestland owners have enrolled about 60 million acres into the programs. Learn more.
CROP INSURANCE INDEMNITIES FOR 2013 CROPS PASS $5 BILLION... U.S. crop insurance indemnities moved to $5.044 billion as of Oct. 28, nudging the loss ratio to 0.43 for the program for 2013 crops, according to Risk Management Agency (RMA) data. The largest payouts so far on 2013 crops are for wheat where indemnities moved to $2.017 billion and pushed the loss ratio to 1.03. The only other major crops with loss ratios of 1.0 or greater are cotton and rice. Cotton indemnities are at $666 million (1.00 loss ratio) while rice payouts stand at $84 million (1.48 loss ratio). Tallies for corn and soybeans have increased, but so far are well below levels seen for 2012 crops. Overall indemnities still are ahead of the pace seen at this point of the year for 2012 crops, when payouts stood at $3.503 billion on their way to an eventual record of $17.416 billion. Get more details.