The guessing games continue for the fall.
After the Aug. 12 USDA yield estimates surprised a vast majority of traders and farmers with higher production than expected, other agencies and publications have begun posting their own estimates.
Allendale’s chief strategist Rich Nelson detailed his agency’s estimates on Sept. 4, which showed some declines from the latest USDA numbers in both corn and soybeans.
Allendale projected the average U.S. corn yield at 167.71 bushels per acre, below the USDA’s August prediction of 169.5 bu./acre.
Iowa’s estimate was pegged at 192 bu./acre, with Illinois expected to harvest 178 bu./acre and Missouri 158.
“Most of these numbers for the western Corn Belt was not too much of a surprise,” Nelson said.
“The main states, Iowa and Nebraska, were very close to the USDA numbers.”
The Dakotas had some of the biggest yield expectation declines in the Allendale survey, with North Dakota down 5 bu./acre from the August USDA guess, at 141, and South Dakota 11 under at 146.
Nelson said the eastern Corn Belt is a little tougher to forecast.
Soybean production also had lower estimates than the August USDA report, Allendale’s survey showed.
The survey posted an estimate of 46.13 bu./acre for a national average, compared to the USDA projection of 48.51. Iowa’s estimate was 53 bu./acre, with Illinois at 49 and Missouri at 44.
“In a lot of our surveys, the producers said with corn that it looks good,” Nelson said. “The questions were on maturity. For soybeans we heard a few more questions regarding the crop itself. Not just maturity, but also the idea of yield in general as well.”
Nelson said the crop is not expected to hit maturity until late September at the earliest, with most states going into the first or second week of October. With those maturity issues and concerns, Nelson said it may take some time for that to bake into the market.
According to their survey, 26% of new-crop corn has been sold, while 16% of new-crop soybeans have been sold. He said the corn number is pretty average for this time of year, but soybeans sold are lower than normal.