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Grain prices dip despite lower crop estimates

November 6, 2012

Informa Economics raised its estimate for the US soybean crop less than many investors had expected, and unexpectedly cut its hopes for corn output, but the data provided only temporary relief to crop futures on a weak day for risk assets.

Informa lowered its estimate for the US corn crop by some 450m bushels 10.7bn bushels, citing a yield which it saw at 122.4 bushels per acre, below the previous forecast of 127.0 bushels per acre.

For soybeans, the yield estimate was raised, but by a 0.8 bushels per acre to 37.8 bushels per acre, adding an extra 65m bushels to the crop.

The figures were – unexpectedly – less upbeat than those released by FCStone on Thursday, amid a run of updates by analysts ahead of the next US Department of Agriculture Wasde crop report next week.

Ahead of Informa’s report, Richard O’Brien at RJ O’Brien said “I fear that Informa will confirm larger” output for both crops, while rival broker US Commodities forecast “bearish estimates”.

However, after the results, Tregg Cronin at CHS Hedging said that the data were “not as bearish as I thought they’d be”, adding that they boded well for investors hoping for a bullish outcome to next week’s USDA’s Wasde briefing.

“Informa has been above the USDA nine times on corn and soybeans [production] and below only once last 10 years,” ahead of November Wasde reports, he said.

Pre-Wasde corn estimates

FCStone – yield, 124 bushels per acre; production, 10.881bn bushels

Informa Economics: yield, 122.4 bushels per acre; production, 10.738bn bushels

Current USDA estimate: yield, 122.0 bushels per acre; production, 10.706bn bushels

via Grain, soybean prices dip despite Informa data.

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