Corn and wheat meet expectations, with mixed results.

Ben Potter, Senior editor

June 7, 2018

3 Min Read
AvigatorPhotographer/Getty Images

After posting a healthy 38.4 million bushels in export sales the prior week, soybean sales tumbled more than 80% for the week ending May 31 – helping to cause prices to slump once more Thursday morning. Corn and wheat export sales held much closer to week-over-week trends, meantime, with both crops besting the latest trade estimates.

Soybean exports saw 6.1 million bushels in old crop sales plus another 1.3 million bushels in new crop sales for a total of just more than 7.3 million bushels. That total fell well below trade estimates of 25.7 million bushels, as well as the prior week’s total of 38.4 million bushels. Still, the weekly rate needed to reach USDA forecasts is just 1.6 million bushels, as commitments have already reached 99% of the agency’s estimates.


Soybean export shipments of 19.0 million bushels landed 20% below the prior week and 21% below the four-week average. China, with 4.8 million bushels, was the No. 1 destination but only accounted for about 25% of the total. (For marketing year 2017/18, China has accounted for 52% of all U.S. soybean export shipments.) Other top destinations last week included the Netherlands, Mexico, Egypt and Colombia.


Corn exports saw 33.0 million bushels in old crop sales and another 16.5 million bushels in new crop sales for a total of 49.5 million bushels. That total was slightly higher than the prior week’s total of 45.0 million bushels and moderately ahead of trade estimates of 41.3 million bushels. The weekly rate needed to reach USDA forecasts was again cut to a very manageable 3.7 million bushels after commitments reached 98% of the agency’s estimates.



Corn export shipments of 57.0 million bushels fell 24% from the prior week and 14% below the four-week average. Mexico was again the top destination last week, with 10.5 million bushels, followed by Japan, Colombia, Vietnam and South Korea.


Wheat export sales saw reductions of 0.7 million bushels in old crop sales more than counteracted by 9.2 million bushels in new crop sales, for a total of 8.5 million bushels. Totals fell ahead of trade estimates of 5.5 million bushels but lagged behind the prior week’s total of 11.0 million bushels. The crop ends the 2017/18 marketing year with commitments only reaching 96% of USDA estimates.


Wheat export shipments of 8.6 million bushels dipped 48% below that prior week and 40% below the four-week average. Mexico was the No. 1 destination, with 2.5 million bushels. Other top destinations included Malaysia, Japan, the Dominican Republic and Nigeria. Accumulated export shipments for 2017/18 finished 15% below the pace set in 2016/17.


Sorghum net sales posted more tepid results last week, notching less than 470,000 bushels heading primarily to unknown destinations, with the remainder (less than 10%) bound for China. Export shipments were down 95% from the prior four-week average.


About the Author(s)

Ben Potter

Senior editor, Farm Futures

Senior Editor Ben Potter brings two decades of professional agricultural communications and journalism experience to Farm Futures. He began working in the industry in the highly specific world of southern row crop production. Since that time, he has expanded his knowledge to cover a broad range of topics relevant to agriculture, including agronomy, machinery, technology, business, marketing, politics and weather. He has won several writing awards from the American Agricultural Editors Association, most recently on two features about drones and farmers who operate distilleries as a side business. Ben is a graduate of the University of Missouri School of Journalism.

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