USDA released the 2015 Prospective Plantings Report
on March 31, 2015.
These numbers made the corn and bean market decline when it was released midday. Corn came in at 89.2 million acres. Corn acres look to be higher in the south and Texas.
Soybeans came in at 84.6 million acres. This is a new record high for soybean acres, but still below most estimates.
Corn Stocks came in 7.745 billion bushels, 136 million bushels higher than the average guess, and over 736 million bushels more than a year ago. Indiana, Iowa, and Illinois are the the state holding most of the corn, and that is not surprising since they sit right in the middle of the corn belt. April Supply and Demand Report might show more ending stocks, depending on the feed usage.
Bean Stocks came in at 1.333 billion bushels, 12 million bushels lower the the average guess, and 340 million bushels more than a year ago. Indiana, Iowa, Illinois and Ohio still has the majority of bushels on hand.
Wheat usage and stocks had no surprises, no record highs or lows.
What does this report mean? In my opinion, we are looking at another big crop year. We are far from it being harvested, and many factors can change the game at any time. Traders will keep an eye out on the weather this spring, of course. Planting in the south and Texas is currently being delayed with rains moving in, but they are not wide spread. They will also watch corn stocks closely, and the bushels being distributed. If farmers hold on to their bushels going into summer, they might see a very supportive basis level, but they might also see the basis level go the other way very quickly.
USDA reports are not always easy to decipher. But understand the timing of the report and how it might affect the grain markets is important for your operation and marketing plan.