USDA gave us the regular weekly update on the conditions of the crops during this year's growing season this afternoon.
Here are the breakdowns:
THIS WEEK LAST WEEK
Good Excellent Good Excellent
Corn 59 17 60 15
Soybeans 60 13 62 12
Compared to last year, the corn crop is 76% Good-Excellent compared to 75% last week and 64% last year. The crop is 97% emerged compared to 92% last week and 91% last year. The five year average is 96%.
In the big TWO ( Iowa and Illinois) the corn crop improved in the state index reading where 100 is regarded as normal. Illinois stands at 109 compared to 108 last week and 106 last year while Iowa came in at 110 compared to 109 last week and 110 last year.
Soybeans are rated 73% Good-Excellent compared to 74% last week and 64% for the same week last year. The emergence rate stands at 83% emerged compared to 63% last year and the five year average of 77%.
At the state index level, Illinois dropped to 106 from 108 last week which is still above last year's reading of 102. Iowa saw conditions drop to 108 from 109 but well above last year's poor reading of 95.
The slight drop in soybean ratings is due to excessive rains in some areas of the states. Generally speaking the low lying areas or the ones with heavier soils tend to show declines when excessive rainfall results in those areas "ponding". The widespread rains however mostly remain very welcome among the majority of growers.
All in all the corn and bean crops remain off to a good start especially compared to last year. Warmer weather and abundant moisture are the ingredients to produce big crops. With all this rainfall some areas have been receiving, a bit of heat would actually greatly benefit the crop. One would be surprised at how fast these crops can grow when conditions are right!
We'll see how the markets respond to the index ratings in Asian trade this evening. I tend to put very little faith in what Asian price action does as it is too thin and leaves the grains open to "game playing" by large speculators. Those of you long time grain traders know exactly what I mean.
The big test will be the opening of the pit session tomorrow ( Tuesday) and how they trade throughout the session.
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