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Monthly crop report shows little change

Published: Friday, Dec. 28, 2012 2:26 p.m. CDT

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Agriculture Department’s monthly crop report showed no change in the 2012 ending stocks forecast for corn and a slight decrease for soybeans compared to the prior month.

Identical to last month, corn ending stocks in the U.S. for the marketing year are projected to be tight at 647 million bushels, representing 21 days of supply. Globally, USDA pegged corn ending stocks 13.4 million metric tons lower than the prior year, primarily due to the effect of the protracted drought in the U.S. While USDA did lower the global ending stocks figure, the estimate of Chinese corn production was boosted by 8 million metric tons compared to last month; however, demand also increased so global stocks for corn are essentially unchanged.

Ending stocks for soybeans are projected to be 130 million bushels (about a 16-day supply), which Todd Davis, a senior economist with the American Farm Bureau Federation, described as “incredibly tight.”

Global wheat stocks were projected down at 177 million metric tons, reflecting greatly reduced crops in the former Soviet Union, Australia and Argentina.

“Once again, all eyes turn to the Southern hemisphere, as large corn and soybean crops there could ease the tight stock situation in the U.S.,” Davis said.

Soybean production in Argentina and Brazil is forecast 26 percent higher compared to the prior crop, which will be beneficial if realized.

“Market watchers will have a lot of information to chew on in early January,” Davis said.

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