February 27, 2024

USDA lowers year-end supply projections

WASHINGTON — Lower corn and soybean production tightened projected new crop ending stocks in the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s latest supply and demand estimates.

Here are the highlights.

Corn: USDA raised the season-average price by a dime to $6.75 per bushel. Why?

• Corn production for 2022-2023 is forecast at 13.9 billion bushels, down 415 million from last month on reductions to harvested area and yield. The national average yield is forecast at 172.5 bushels per acre, 2.9 bushels below last month’s forecast.

• Harvested area for grain is forecast at 80.8 million acres, 1 million less than previously estimated.

• Total U.S. corn use was cut 250 million bushels to 14.3 billion.

• Feed and residual use was lowered 100 million bushels based on a smaller crop and higher expected prices.

• Exports were cut 100 million bushels to 2.3 billion while corn used for ethanol was lowered 50 million to 5.3 billion.

• With supply falling more than use, ending stocks are down 169 million bushels to 1.2 billion, lowering the stocks-to-use ratio from 9.6% to 8.5%.

• Foreign corn ending stocks were increased by 2.2 million tons to 273.6 million, mostly reflecting increases for China and India that are partially offset by declines for Ukraine, the European Union and Thailand.

• World corn ending stocks at 304.5 million tons are down 2.2 million from last month.

Soybeans: No change was made from last month to the season-average price of $14.35 per bushel. Why?

• Higher beginning stocks of 240 million bushels reflect a lower export forecast for 2021-2022. Beginning stocks were 225 million bushels in the August report.

• Soybean production is projected at 4.4 billion bushels, down 152 million with lower harvested area and yield. Harvested area is down 0.6 million from the August forecast.

• The soybean yield forecast of 50.5 bushels per acre is 1.4 bushels lower than last month.

• The crush forecast was reduced by 20 million bushels and the soybean export forecast was lowered by 70 million bushels on lower supplies.

• Ending stocks are projected at 200 million bushels, down 45 million from last month. As a result, stocks-to-use were lowered from 5.4% in August to 4.5% this month.

• China soybean imports for 2022-2023 were lowered 1 million tons to 97 million.

• Global soybean ending stocks at 98.9 million tons are down 2.5 million mainly on lower U.S. and China stocks.

Wheat: The 2022-2023 season-average price was lowered a quarter from last month to $9 per bushel which remains a record. Why?

• The 2022-2023 U.S. outlook for supply and use is unchanged from the August estimates.

• Production in Russia is forecast 3 million tons higher, to 91 million, on harvest results for winter wheat to date published by the Russian Ministry of Agriculture. If realized, area harvested, yield and production for Russia will all reach record highs.

• The Ukraine production forecast is increased 1 million tons to 20.5 million as the harvest is nearly complete and government statistics reported higher yields in the Forest and Forest-Steppe zones.

• Global trade was nearly unchanged, rising 0.2 million tons to 208.9 million as there were no changes for any of the major exporters.

• World ending stocks were increased 1.2 million tons to 268.6 million as stock increases in Russian and Ukraine more than offset a decline in the EU.

Corn (2022-2023 marketing year)

Total corn supply: 15.494 billion bushels

Exports: 2.275 billion bushels

Feed, residual use: 5.225 billion bushels

Food, seed, industrial use: 6.775 billion bushels

Ethanol and byproducts: 5.325 billion bushels

Ending U.S. corn stocks: 1.219 billion bushels

Soybeans (2022-2023 marketing year)

Total soybean supply: 4.633 billion bushels

Seed, residual: 123 million bushels

Exports: 2.085 billion bushels

Crushings: 2.225 billion bushels

Ending U.S. soybean stocks: 200 million bushels

Tom Doran

Tom C. Doran

Field Editor