Crop Progress: More Than Half The U.S. Corn Already Planted

Includes: CORN, SOYB, WEAT
by: T. Marc Schober

Monday afternoon, the USDA released its weekly crop progress report and to no surprise, corn, soybeans, and wheat are all out pacing their historical averages.

As of April 30, 2012, the 18 primary corn producing states have planted more than half of their corn crop with 53% of the U.S. corn planted, compared to 12% one year prior. 17 of the 18 states have planted more than their five-year historical average. Illinois has already planted 79% of its corn which outpaces its five-year average of 29%. 15% of the U.S. corn crop has already emerged compared to 4% from a year ago.

As of the fourth week of April, 12% of U.S. soybeans have been planted, a 10% increase from a year ago, and a 7% increase from its five-year average.

The six primary spring wheat producing states have planted 74% of their crop, compared to the five-year average of only 32%. South Dakota, which on average the past five years has 50% planted by this time, has almost planted their entire crop at 97%.

Winter wheat conditions have largely outperformed 2011's conditions with 64% of the winter wheat crop in good or excellent condition; a 30% increase from last year. Winter wheat in very poor or poor condition is at 10%; a 31% decrease from one year prior.

Corn prices increased by 6.1% over the past week ending at $6.60 per bushel, soybean prices increased by 4.6% over the past week ending at $15.03 per bushel, and wheat prices ended the week at $6.47 per bushel, a 3.5% increase from last week. Year-over-year corn prices are down 12.5%, soybeans are up 8.0%, and wheat is down 15.9%.

Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.