U.S. corn harvest progressed by 12 percentage points in the week ended Nov. 8 compared to a week ago, while soybean harvest progressed by 24 percentage points, according to USDA's latest weekly crop progress report.
Corn harvest stood at 37 percent compared to 25 percent a week ago. Last year at this time 69 percent of the corn crop was in. On average over the past five years 82 percent of the crop was harvested by now. The statistics represent activity in the 18 states that produced 94 percent of last year's corn crop.
"Overall, the report is supportive for the market," says Marty Foreman, Doane economist. "Also the current weather forecasts look favorable for harvest with less rain in the forecast for this weekend. We're essentially one month behind with harvest but I expect harvest progress to jump up to the mid-fifty percent complete range as of next Sunday."
Foreman sees corn prices currently at "harvest time" highs and expects that as harvest progresses prices should ease back down before rallying again in late November or early December.
Soybean harvest stood at 75 percent complete by Nov. 8, up from 51 percent a week ago. This compares to 91 percent by this time last year and 92 percent on average over the past five years. The statistics represent activity in the 18 states that produced 95 percent of last year's soybean crop.
"USDA raised its estimate for soybean meal production and raised its crush estimate by 5 million bushels but left use numbers unchanged so there's not much change in price," says Bill Nelson, Doane economist. "USDA's current estimate for soybean meal price is $250 to $310 per ton,"
Nelson holds that South American weather has the potential to affect soybean prices going forward. "Some of the major soybean production areas there have been on the dry side and that's something the market is paying close attention to."
Source: USDA, Doane