May 16 – American Farmers Playing Catch Up… Now What?

U.S. farmers have caught up on corn planting, with 62% of the crop in the ground. After facing delays, farmers are set to plant 88 million acres.

On Monday, the USDA reported that U.S. farmers have caught up on corn planting. We once faced long delays. Now, we have farmers set to plant 88 million acres. Let’s look at the numbers.

Ahead of the NASS report, trade expectations for progress fell in a range of 55% to 60%.
How did the planting turn out?

The USDA says that 62% of the corn crop has been put into the ground. Farmers are still a point behind the five-year average.

It was another big week for American farmers given that the previous report showed progress at 39%. Farmers made up a lot of ground in Minnesota, Indiana, and Illinois. Progress is still well behind in South Dakota and North Dakota.

Next week’s progress report will be critical. If progress isn’t around 80% next week, we’ll start to see analysts begin to cut at the 174 bushels per acre that was noted in last week’s WASDE report.

And it was already a relatively bullish May WASDE report given the roughly 2.5-bushel cut to yields from last crop year. Carryout is expected to fall by 590 million bushels, and indications suggest that corn production is going to be reduced in future reports instead of hiked.

With that in mind, there’s still a lot of corn sitting in storage. People are looking for price bumps and we’re going to sit down on Wednesday and start to determine where we want to be from a sales percentage heading into June.

Look for an update on pricing from us later this week.

About the Author
Garrett Baldwin

Garrett Baldwin is a content strategist and editor at FarmLead. He covers the global grain markets and public policy issues related to the agricultural industry. He is a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University. He also holds a Master’s Degree in Economic Policy from The Johns Hopkins University, an MS in Agricultural Economics from Purdue University, and an MBA in Finance from Indiana University.