ERS Projects Higher Corn, Sorghum Ending Stocks

The USDA’s Economic Research Service Thursday projected higher corn and sorghum ending stocks this year despite lowered production forecasts by the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service.

Monthly USDA Situation and Outlook Report Authors Tom Capehart, Olga Liefert and David Olson reduced projected corn used for ethanol for the 20187/19 crop by 50 million bushels to 5.6 million, and sorghum’s food, seed and industrial use was lowered 15 million bushels to 110 million.  Projections were based on NASS statistics through October and US Department of Energy Information Administration weekly ethanol production data for November.

With a new record-high projection for Ukrainian corn production and exports, the country becomes the second largest world corn exporter after the US.  Brazilian corn exports also were up, reflecting an unusually high pace for the tail end of the 2017/18 season.

US corn export projections were unchanged.




Projected 2018/19 US feed grain supplies were lowered 0.2 million tonnes this month on lower corn and barley imports.  Supply was projected at 445.8 million tons, 3.1 million below 2017/18.

Projected feed grain use was lowered 1.3 million tonnes to 397.3 million but if realized would be 6.3 million more than 2017/18.  Feed and residual use was raised 0.4 million tonnes to 145.2 million, while food, seed and industrial use was down 1.7 million to 187.2 million on lower corn and sorghum use for ethanol.

Export projections were unchanged at 64.9 million tonnes.

Resulting ending stocks were projected 1.0 million tonnes higher at 48.5 million, 9.4 million fewer than 2017/18.

Grain Consuming Animal Units for 2018/19 were projected at 101.9 million, up from last month’s 101.1 million and 3.0 million more than last year.  Compared with last month, broilers, dairy cows and heifers were lowered.

Feed and residual use per GCAU was projected at 1.48 tonnes, down 1.47 from last month and 0.6 fewer than last year’s 1.42.




Projected 2018/19 corn bushels used for ethanol were reduced 50 million this month to 5.6 billion, with an expected decline in first-quarter grind.  Based on data from the Grain Crushings and CoProducts Production report from NASS and November production based on US Energy Information Administration weekly data, first-quarter ethanol production was projected lower for the first time since 2012.  Corn used for ethanol in 2017/18 totaled 5,605 million bushels.

Because of that decline, projected 2018/19 food, seed and industrial use was reduced to 7,080 million bushels, 23 million below 2017/18.  Similarly, projected total disappearance was lowered to 15,030 million bushels, 237 below last year.

Ending stocks reflect reduced supply and disappearance for a 45-million bushel increase to 1,781 million, 359 million below 2017/18.  Increased supplies relative to use are manifested in a 0.5 increase in the stocks-to-use ratio to 11.9 this month, versus 2017/18’s 14.5.




A total of 97 head of fed cattle sold Wednesday at the Fed Cattle Exchange video auction at an average price of $119 per cwt, up $1.17 from a week earlier.

Cash cattle traded last week at $118 to mostly $$119 per cwt, steady with the previous week.  Dressed-basis trade was at $187 to mostly $188 per cwt, steady to up $1.

The USDA choice cutout Friday was down $1.51 per cwt at $210.96, while select was up $2.14 at $203.14.  The choice/select spread narrowed to $7.82 from $11.47 with 52 loads of fabricated product sold into the spot market.

No delivery notices were served for Dec live cattle.

The CME Feeder Cattle index for the seven days ended Thursday, was $146.91 per cwt, up $0.51.  This compares with Friday’s Jan settlement of $147.57, down $0.40.