The USDA’s latest World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) report – released the morning of April 9 – shows cotton production and ending stocks for the 2009/2010 crop continuing a dipping trend.

The production estimate is reduced 251,000 bales from March “based on USDA’s final Cotton Ginnings report. … With domestic mill use and exports unchanged, the lower production is reflected in ending stocks of 3 million bales, 200,000 below last month. The stocks-to-use ratio of 19.4 percent would be the smallest since 2003/04. The forecast range for the marketing-year average price received by producers of 61.5 to 65.5 cents per pound is raised 1 cent on the lower end of the range.”

Further, cotton forecasts show “slightly lower” ending stocks while beginning stocks are “raised marginally due mainly to prior year adjustments for India and Pakistan.”

In total, the report has world production reduced about 500,000 bales while consumption is raised “reflecting increases for Brazil, India, Turkey, and Uzbekistan, partially offset by a reduction for Pakistan.”

The report pegs cotton ending stocks at 50.9 million bales, “44 percent of world consumption, which is the smallest world stocks-to-use since 1994/95.”

Soybeans

The April WASDE report has U.S. soybean exports for 2009/10 increasing by 25 million bushels.

The vigorous shipment pace “is projected to carry U.S. soybean exports to a record 1.445 billion bushels, 13 percent above the previous record set in 2008/09 despite an expected decline in exports for the remainder of the marketing year due to strong competition from South America.”

• U.S. soybean ending stocks remain unchanged at 190 million bushels.

• The projected U.S. season-average soybean price range is narrowed 25 cents on both ends of the range to $9.20 to $9.70 per bushel.

• The projected soybean meal price range is narrowed $5 on both ends to $285 to $305 per short ton.

• Soybean production for Argentina is projected at 54 million tons, up 1 million from last month as favorable late-season weather further improves yield prospects.

• Soybean production for Brazil is projected at 67.5 million tons, up 0.5 million, also based on higher yields.

Corn

Corn feed and residual use is projected 100 million bushels lower as March 1 stocks “and a record January ethanol production indicate lower-than-expected December-February feed and residual disappearance.”

Even so, projected 2009/10 corn use for ethanol remains unchanged.

“Poor margins for ethanol producers and rising ethanol stocks limit near-term growth in production, despite strong price incentives for blending with a large discount for ethanol compared with gasoline. The lack of growth in gasoline consumption is likely constraining ethanol usage. Corn ending stocks are projected 100 million bushels higher. The 2009/10 marketing-year average corn farm price projection is narrowed 5 cents on both ends of the range to $3.50 to $3.70 per bushel.”

High production potential in Brazil and South Africa has raised world corn production forecasts 2 million tons.

The report says “corn production is raised 2.5 million tons for Brazil as higher reported summer crop yields and higher winter crop area boost production prospects. Rains have continued to support yield prospects in the central west region, but additional rains through April will be critical to winter crop yields. South Africa corn production is raised 0.5 million tons as another month of rains in the western growing areas is expected to further boost yields in this traditionally more arid region.”

email: dbennett@farmpress.com