Grain traders expect USDA to lower its corn yield forecasts after heat wave

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Corn traders are focused on the supply and demand report out today from the U.S. Department of Agriculture that also will update yield forecasts.
The USDA’s July forecast put the national yield at 158.7 bushels per acre, up from 153 bushels per acre last year but down from 164 bushels per acre two years ago.
Some private forecasters, noting the heat stress in Iowa and Illinois last month and the potential for damage during pollination, have cut their yield estimates to as low as 153 bushels per acre.

"The trade is looking for the yield to be reduced to 155.2 bushels per acre with a range of 151 to 158 bushels per acre," said Des Moines commodity broker Tomm Pfitzenmaier.
If that forecast proves true, corn end users such as processors and ethanol plants will face another year of tight supplies, which now are at their lowest since the mid-1990s. Corn has doubled in price in the last 14 months.
On the Chicago Board of Trade on Wednesday, corn was unchanged despite the massive sell-off in the stock market. September corn closed at $6.78 per bushel.

"Fears of poor yields added to the positive tone," the Board of Trade said in market closing commentary.

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