WASDE: corn exports drop, total supply unchanged

By Susanne Retka Schill | December 09, 2009
Report posted Dec. 10, 2009, at 11:38 p.m. CST

As the first big snow storm of the season ended any lingering corn harvest, the USDA provided its latest update on the U.S. and world corn crop in its Dec. 10 World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates. World corn stocks were unchanged, but the USDA lowered its projections for U.S. corn exports by 50 million bushels based on the slow pace of shipments to date and increased competition from larger supplies in Ukraine.

In turn, it raised the projected U.S. corn ending stocks by 50 million bushels. The projected total ending stocks for the current marketing year of 1.67 million bushels will be nearly unchanged from the carryover in 2008-'09. USDA also left its 2009-'10 average farm price projection unchanged in a range of $3.25 to $3.85 per bushel.

Projected corn use for ethanol was unchanged in the December WASDE report as compared to the November estimates at 4.2 billion bushels. That compares with the estimated corn use for ethanol for the last marketing year of 3.68 billion bushels and 3.05 billion bushels in 2007-'08. Corn use for ethanol nearly doubles exports. Exports for the current year were projected at 2.05 billion bushels; last year's final estimated use was 1.86 billion bushels exported and 2007-'08 was 2.44 billion bushels exported.

Global coarse grain trade for 2009-10 was nearly unchanged this month as higher Ukraine corn exports offset lower U.S. corn exports and increases in other coarse grains such as barley, millet and sorghum were offset by decreases elsewhere. Global coarse grain ending stocks were down 0.8 million tons with reductions in projected stocks of mixed grains, millet, rye, barley and oats more than offsetting an increase in sorghum. Global corn stocks were unchanged.