What Today’s USDA Reports Mean to You

June 29, 2009 07:00 PM
Sara Schafer, AgWeb Business & Crops Online Editor
Today USDA released their June acreage and quarterly grain stocks reports. These reports are full of estimates, figures and speculation, making them difficult to quickly digest. Read and listen to comments from two market experts, Jerry Gulke, Strategic Marketing Services owner and Top Producer columnist, and Jim Bower, president of Bower Trading, to see how the report numbers might affect your operation.
Significant Surprises
Bower says the June 30 reports are major reports for the year that lay the foundation for the rest of the growing season.
Gulke says in this report the big surprise was the increase in corn acres. "Corn acres are significantly higher than most expected,” he says.
Officially, corn acreage came in at 87 million.
"USDA is saying we'll plant 1 million more acres of corn than last year,” he says. "I doubt it. When all the dust settles, I don't think we'll see corn acres up this high.”
Regardless of the number of corn acres planted, Bower says the vital time will be at pollination time.
"The chief critical time for corn pollination in the Midwest is July 12 to Aug. 2,” Bower says. "So, weather will be real important for that particular timeframe.”
Gulke agrees. He says now farmers can start looking at the weather down the line to see what kind of yields they'll get.
Luckily, he says, with the current number of acres dedicated to corn, farmers can afford a big weather problem.
Market Advice
Gulke says the report provides some good insight for farmers and others in how to market their commodities.
"If you are hedged, I'd stay there and let the market force you out of it, you are in the right position,” he says. "If you are an end user, you start selectively pick your point as to where you want to cover your costs.”
Listen to Gulke and Bower's Top Producer audio analysis:

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