What We're Working on For This Week's Newsletter

October 10, 2012 10:40 AM
  • USDA Supply & Demand and Crop Production Reports. Everybody wants to know how USDA's NASS might adjust the size of the corn and soybean crops, but the first number you should look to is the 2012-13 carryover estimates. REASON: Bigger demand should offset most (if not all) of any increase in the corn and/or soybean production estimates.


  • El Nino has faded and spots of cooler-than-normal sea surface temperatures are expanding along the equator in the Pacific Ocean. We'll have some perspective from meteorologist Gail Martell.


  • Export "this," but don't export "that." Russian President Putin in one breath said they haven't considered restricting grain exports, BUT only "surplus" grains should be exported and government-owned intervention stocks should be held for domestic use. (Sooooo.... how is that not an export restriction?)


  • Russia has currently harvested 68 MMT of grain and total production will come in around "70 MMT, maybe even a little more," according to the deputy prime minister in charge of agriculture. That's lower than the 72 MMT to 73 MMT forecast from the country's ag ministry. Russian grain exports for 2012-13 are expected to fall in the 10 MMT to 14 MMT range.


  • GOP Candidate Mitt Romney gave a speech at an Iowa farm Tuesday that was short on farm policy specifics, though he did release a 14-page ag position paper. These details largely depend upon the personnel he would pick if elected. We'll have some additional perspective, including some comments from Washington consultant Jim Wiesemeyer.


  • If you're looking for why wheat futures are stubbornly holding in a fairly narrow trading range while corn and soybean futures have fallen under harvest-steason pressure, here's one:

    FranceAgriMer forecasts 2012-13 wheat stocks to be the tightest on record since the French farm office began keeping stats in 1999-2000 at 1.8 MMT. France's ag ministry cut its wheat crop forecast to 35.9 MMT from 36.5 MMT previously. This year's crop would still be 5.6% higher than the 2011 crop.

But if you're looking for a reason more wheat demand hasn't come to the U.S., here's one:

    Australian 2011-12 (Oct.-Sept.) wheat exports increased to a record 21.7 MMT as of the end of August -- the first time exports have ever topped 20 MMT.


  • As of Sunday, USDA reports 69% of the nation's corn crop was harvested compared to 54% the previous week and 28% on average. Soybean harvest was 58% complete compared to 41% last week and 40% on average. Winter wheat seedings are in line with the five year-average pace at 57% done, but emergence is running behind normal because of drought conditions. Cotton harvest is inching along at 21% done, one point behind the five-year average harvest pace.


  • After a quicker-than-usual start to soybean planting in Brazil, planting has slowed to about average, with 3% to 5% of the crop seeded nationwide. Last year at this time around 5% was planted, says South American crop consultant Dr. Michael Cordonnier.


  • The World Bank now sees 2012 Chinese GDP at 7.7% versus its previous forecast of 8.2% growth and 2013 GDP at 8.1% compared with its prior forecast of 8.6% growth. Despite the reduced economic growth forecasts, the World Bank anticipates a soft landing for China's economy and sees limited risk of a hard landing.

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