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July 12, 2015
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Consultant Lowers Corn, Soybean Yield and Acreage

After touring Indiana and western Ohio, Pro Farmer Crop Consultant Dr. Michael Cordonnier concluded, “Farmers in Indiana are in big, big trouble and farmers in western Ohio are not much better off.” He says corn in these two states is worse than he expected and soybeans are much worse than anticipated. Yield potential for corn and beans has been “severely compromised” in both states.

Therefore, Dr. Cordonnier lopped another 2 bu. off his corn yield forecast and 1.5 bu. off his soybean yield peg. He now pegs the corn yield at 163 bu. per acre and the soybean yield at 43.5 bu. per acre. In addition to his yield reductions, Dr. Cordonnier also cut 300,000 acres off USDA’s June harvested corn acreage figure and took 1.5 million acres off its soybean harvested acreage estimate. The yield and acreage reductions lowered his corn production estimate to 13.14 billion bu. and his soybean peg to 3.58 billion bushels. He maintains a lower (potentially much lower) bias to both crops.

Other key points of the report include: –

“Excessive moisture in the central, eastern, and southern Corn Belt is delaying the completion of the full-season soybean planting and the double crop soybean planting. Furthermore, high temperatures and dry weather in the southeastern U.S. (South Carolina, North Carolina, and Georgia) could impact the corn first and then the soybeans in the region.”

.Note: See – Pro Farmer: ProFarmer.com – News

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April 4, 2014
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Agricultural commodities have risen sharply this year. 

During the first quarter of 2014, the International Gains and Oilseeds Index (“GOI”) rose from 250 to 267 or 6.8%. The GOI was positively affected by increases in the price of wheat, maize and barley, which was partly offset by declines in soybeans and rice. The increase in agricultural prices is mainly due to unfavorable U.S. weather conditions and concerns over Ukraine, a major grain exporter. The potential impact of continued political tensions in the Ukraine and the Black Sea region remains uncertain. The political and economic/financial uncertainty caused by the tensions in the region has increased prices and volatility. Russia and Ukraine are both significant exporters of wheat, with the Ukraine the third leading global exporter of maize.

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March 15, 2014
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It doesn’t take much to realize that when you need a virtual sun to imagine what the real sun is like, it is time to cut the use of pollution inputs. However, this will come at a cost to Chinese society and development.

China has reached this point. Its cities are being choked by pollution. The life expectancy of its citizens is being shortened by poor air quality. To reduce the impact of pollutants, industrial production will be negatively impacted. Power production will also be affected. GDP growth and the expectations of future GDP growth will have to adjusted lower. Making these adjustments will not be easy or without challenges.

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December 21, 2013
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If the Chinese Government or the People’s Bank of China (“PBoC”) cannot slow the growth of Chinese economy, then the pollution caused by the expansive growth surely will. China is being strangled by a dark haze of smog and pollution caused by industrial expansion that is impacting the health of its society. Overall life expectancy is being impacted by the Government’s race to grow and action must be taken.

The South China Morning Post (“SCMP”) reported that choking, toxic smog has spread across China and now overhangs coastal cities and cities  inland. The smog that normally encompasses China’s major cities, Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou has expanded inland to  cities in central and western provinces as well as in the north of the country. Additionally, three cities in coastal Shandong province were also shrouded by smog yesterday.

Cities in the west, not known to experience such environmental vagaries, including holiday tourist centers such as Lhasa and Xian have been heavily covered in smog or dust for the last two to three days. Extremely poor air quality readings have been off the chart recently measured. PM10 particles, these are the larger air particles, up to 10 microns in diameter, were blamed for the intolerable conditions.

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July 28, 2013
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This month the U.S. Department of Agriculture issued the World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (“WASDE”) highlighting: – 

  • A tightening of old crop supplies have provided some support to spot export quotations and near-term futures.
  • New-crop futures are sensitive to weather forecasts and conditions. A large percentage of the Corn Belt’s crop will soon pollinate.  Corn crop conditions declined the week ended July 14th and a heat wave since July 11th has stressed shallow rooted corn in the western Corn Belt. While weather conditions were stressful to the crop, new-crop futures faced price pressure as traders looked ahead to forecasts calling for relief via cooler temps and improved rain chances. Traders feel the first big wave of pollination will occur under non-threatening conditions and therefore, crop concerns are limited. If the weather relief doesn’t pan out, however, attitudes could shift and a fresh wave of buying would likely enter the market.
  • With wheat reliant on the corn market for direction, the key to price action in the wheat market is Corn Belt weather. China bought another 120,000 metric tons (“mt.”) of U.S. Spring Red Winter Wheat (“SRW”) wheat during the week of July 15th and also purchased 600,000 mt. of Australian wheat. China is looking to cover shortfalls of this year’s domestic crop due to weather problems through the growing season and replenish state wheat reserves. Hard Red Winter Wheat (“HRW”) has slightly strengthened as the wheat harvest is into the home stretch in Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas. With seasonal pressure easing, market focus may begin to shift towards demand. Global end-user buying is picking up, but unless they are willing to pay for quality, U.S. wheat is priced above other exporters’ supplies.
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