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Analysts expect USDA to reduce corn exports

In this weekly Commodities Watch column, John T. Barone, president and commodities analyst for Market Vision Inc., offers a snapshot of the state of commodities for restaurants.

Last week’s USDA WASDE proved bearish for corn prices. The USDA left U.S. corn balance sheets unchanged, but lowered the 2012-2013 price forecast from $7.60 to $7.40 per bushel. The stocks-to-use ratio remains very tight, at 5.8 percent.

Most analysts expected (and still expect) the USDA to further reduce corn exports. High prices, poor quality and barge issues on a drought-lowered Mississippi River have been discouraging exports. Corn futures, which had peaked at $8.31 in Aug, sank to $7.12 on Dec. 13 before settling at $7.19 on Friday, Dec. 14.

The USDA lowered its 2012-2013 wheat price projection from $8.10 to $8.00 on increasing world output. They also increased both 2012-2013 soybean crush, and oil yield, for a net projected increase in soy-oil output of 460M lbs. The bump in supply prompted a reduction in the USDA’s 2012-2013 soy-oil forecast from $.53 per lb. to $.51 per lb.

Contact John T. Barone at [email protected].

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