USDA raises already-record soybean crop forecast

November 20, 2016 |

In Washington, the US soybean harvest is coming to a close. Nevertheless, the USDA sprang a surprise with its latest harvest estimate. However, the price effect was fleeting.

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The 2016 US soybean crop was forecast higher than expected. The previous month’s forecast was raised 2.5 million tonnes to 118.8 million tonnes, outpacing the previous year’s figure by just under 12 million tonnes. Higher yields in Minnesota, North Dakota and Kansas led the USDA to raise the overall yield for the US to 35.3 decitonnes per hectare. Prices at the futures exchange responded with significant losses which were, however, recouped over the subsequent few days.

German trade group UFOP notes, “since the USDA raised its US exports estimate by 0.5 million tonnes to 55.8 million tonnes, it also at the same time lowered domestic crush by 0.5 million tonnes to 52.5 million tonnes, a figure closer to the previous year’s level of 51.3 million tonnes. Consequently, exports are taking a new place in the US soybean balance sheet as of this year as they draw level with domestic use. US season-ending soybean stocks for 2016/17 were projected at 13.1 million tonnes. This figure not only exceeds expectations by 2.3 million tonnes, but also outstrips the previous year’s level by just under 8 million tonnes.”

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