Grain Marketing Highlights

Carl German, Extension Crops Marketing Specialist;

Prospective Plantings: Corn and Soybean Acreage Increases; Wheat Decreases
No real surprises are reflected in today’s release of USDA’s prospective plantings report. Corn, soybean, and all wheat prospective plantings fell within pre-report trade expectations. Corn and soybean acres fell slightly below the average trade estimates, with all wheat prospective acres slightly above. The planting intentions report is neutral to bullish for corn and soybeans and neutral to bearish for wheat.

U.S. farmers reported their 2010 planting intentions to USDA as of March 1. They intend to plant 88.8 million acres of corn, an increase of 2.32 million acres from last year. Soybean acreage is expected to total 78.1 million acres, an increase of 650,000 acres from last year. All wheat acres are expected to decrease by 5.3 million acres for the 2010 crop season to 53.83 million acres. Average pre-report trade estimates were 88.94 million acres for corn; 78.55 million acres for soybeans; and 53.33 million acres for all wheat.

Quarterly Stocks in All Positions
U.S. corn stocks as of March 1, 2010 totaled 7.694 billion bushels as compared to 6.954 billion bushels a year ago. U.S. soybean stocks were recorded at 1.270 billion bushels compared to 1.302 billion bushels a year ago. All U.S. wheat stocks were reported at 1.352 billion bushels as compared to 1.040 billion bushels a year ago. Average pre-report trade estimates were 7.505 billion bushels for corn; 1.207 billion bushels for soybeans; and 1.364 billion bushels for all wheat. In December, U.S. corn stocks were reported at 10.934 billion bushels; U.S. soybean stocks at 2.337 billion bushels; and U.S. all wheat stocks at 1.765 billion bushels.

Market Strategy
The commodity markets are expected to take the release of today’s reports in stride. The overriding factors expected to impact the markets in the near term are outside market forces (energy prices, dollar value, the Dow) and the weather. Wet conditions currently prevail in the Corn Belt with more rain in the six to ten day forecast. Currently, new crop Dec ‘10 corn futures are trading at $3.77; Nov ‘10 soybean futures $9.14; and July ‘10 SRW wheat futures at $4.76 per bushel.

For technical assistance on making grain marketing decisions contact Carl l. German, Extension Crops Marketing Specialist.