Growth in US corn sowings less than was expected
Jun. 21, 2010
Informa Economics has cut its estimate of US corn sowings, saying many farmers have opted for soybeans instead, in a dynamic which surprised many investors.
The analysis group, starting the countdown to much-anticipated official data due out on June 30, cut by 300,000 acres to 89.3m acres it estimate for Americas corn plantings.
While the figure is still bigger than the US Department of Agricultures initial 88.8m-acre forecast, many investors have expected that to prove a significant underestimate given the rapid pace of US corn sowings, which has seen as area twice the size of Belgium planted with the grain in one week.
"That was a logical thought," Don Roose, president of US Commodities, told Agrimoney.com.
"However, I think the lower figure is partly because farmers have been holding back in fringe areas."
States such as North and South Dakota, big wheat states, had only finished harvesting last years corn crop in the spring, and had faced storage problems with "last years poor quality crop".
"If you had had a normal fall, it might have been different" for farmers making plantings decisions.
Growers instead looked set to plant 78.8m acres of soybeans, Informa said, adding 300,000 acres to its forecast despite wet weather which has held back the latter stages of sowings.
The figure compares with an initial USDA estimate of 78.1m acres, and 77.5m acres sown last year.
However, Informa estimated that spring wheat planting would, at 13.5m acres, fall 400,000 acres below the USDAs guess.
Durum sowing were pegged at 2.6m acres, 400,000 acres above the USDAs first estimate.
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