Today’s WASDE report confirmed the market’s expectation for lower corn utilization for ethanol, which USDA lowered by 25 million bushels, to 5.550 billion bushels. USDA also lowered U.S. corn exports by 75 million bushels, a move that was less expected but not out of left field either. Together, the adjustments led to a 100 million bushel increase in 2018/19 corn ending stocks, now pegged at 1.835 billion bushels.
USDA raised 2018/19 soybean crush by a conservative 10 million bushels, to 2.100 billion bushels. USDA left projected exports at 1.875 billion bushels for another month as we wait to see if China comes through with its promised soybean purchases.
Globally, the corn balance sheet changed little from February. Supply was unchanged for all the major producers. Estimated use for feed rose almost 1 percent, but projected world ending stocks were down less than half a percent due to the rise in U.S. stocks.
World 2018/19 soybean ending stocks were increased a modest 450,000 MT from last month’s estimate, to 107.2 MMT because lower crush is expected to offset some declines in production. Brazil’s production was lowered to 116.5 MMT, down 500,000 MT, but its exports are still anticipated to hit 79.5 MMT, up 4 percent from last season and up 26 percent from 2016/17.