February 27, 2017

Weekly Outlook: Hog Prices Outperform Expectations

The pork industry outlook has experienced a major shift to the upside. Pork producers are pleased to see 2017 hog prices higher than expected. The low point for the industry was in late November when hog prices dropped to near $32 per hundredweight on a live weight basis. Recent live prices have reached the mid-$50 and have pulled the industry out of deep losses into profitability.

February 24, 2017

Estimated 2016 ARC-CO Payments

On February 23rd, the National Agricultural Statistical Service (NASS) released county yields for the 2016 crop year. With these yield estimates, fairly accurate estimates of 2016 Agricultural Risk Coverage at the county level (ARC-CO) payments can be obtained. We present maps showing estimated payments per base acre for corn, soybeans, and wheat. Also shown are maps giving 2016 county yields relative to benchmark yields. A table showing estimated payments per county in Illinois also is presented.

  • Authors: Gary Schnitkey, Nick Paulson, Jonathan Coppess and Carl Zulauf
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February 23, 2017

Mapping the Farm Bill: House Ag Committee and the 2018 Debate

The House Agriculture Committee of the new Congress began preparation for the 2018 Farm Bill reauthorization debate with a hearing titled "Exploring the Economic Outlook in Rural America" on February 15. In preparation for the reauthorization debate, this article examines the geographical distribution of the members of the House Ag Committee and compares it to the political footprint for the traditional farm commodity coalition.

  • Authors: Jonathan Coppess and Todd Kuethe
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February 22, 2017

Forming Expectations for the 2017 Brazil and Argentina Corn and Soybean Yields: The Impact of La Niña

There continues to be considerable discussion about the likely magnitude of South American corn and soybean production in 2017, with much of current focus on weather developments influencing yield prospects. Current USDA forecasts for Brazil place corn and soybean production at 3.41 and 3.82 billion bushels, respectively. Argentine corn and soybean production projections currently sit at 1.44 and 2.04 billion bushels, respectively. This paper is the final entry in our series on South American corn and soybean yield trend and deviation analysis. The development of a La Niña episode in the latter half of 2016 created a significant amount of discussion on the possible yield impacts for both crops in Brazil and Argentina. This article evaluates the possible impact on yield potential in both countries using the trend and deviation analysis developed in the previous reports of the series.

  • Authors: Todd Hubbs, Scott Irwin, and Darrel Good
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February 21, 2017

Implied Probabilities for Corn and Soybeans Prices in 2017

As crop insurance and crop planting decisions are being made for the 2017 crop year, it is useful to assess possible indemnity, marketing, and harvest price information. Average futures settlement prices during the month of February for December 2017 corn and November 2017 soybeans are used to establish Projected Prices, and volatility factors are taken from options prices during the final week of the month. In addition to crop insurance decisions, marketing and crop planting decisions also depend critically on prices and relative corn/soybean prices. In addition to the current levels of prices, it is also useful to understand the degree of uncertainty about future market prices and the associated implied probabilities of possible prices.

  • Authors: Bruce Sherrick and Gary Schnitkey
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