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U.S. Corn Exports Likely to Fall Short of Target
USAgNet - 09/09/2019

U.S. corn exports finished off the recently concluded U.S. marketing year at the slowest pace in seven years, while soybean exports hit a record high in the fourth quarter owing to anomalously large shipments to China. Analysis of the latest data suggests that U.S. corn exports in 2018-19, which ended on Aug. 31, will fall short of the current full-year government forecast but soybeans likely topped its target.

Reuters reports that the United States shipped 2.88 million tonnes (113 million bushels) of corn in July, according to data published on Wednesday by the U.S. Census Bureau. That was the lowest monthly total since November 2017 and the smallest July volume since 2013.

Weekly export inspection data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture implies August exports may have been up to 4% lighter than in July, which would also be the smallest for that month since 2013.

Using the assumptions about August, corn shipments in the fourth quarter of 2018-19 fell about 56% from a year ago and 34% from two years ago, which featured more modest exports between June and August.

But the world has not been missing out on corn. Combined August corn exports out of the United States and Brazil likely exceeded 10 million tonnes, which is record-high for any month, according to Reuters.

Brazil, the No. 2 corn exporter, shipped an all-time monthly record of 7.65 million tonnes of the yellow grain in August. July’s volume of 6.3 million had briefly held that title.

A record-large harvest, competitive pricing against the U.S. product, and much-improved exporting logistics in recent years have allowed Brazil to supply such massive volumes.

Argentina and Ukraine have also shipped record volumes this year, denting U.S. business as domestic prices soared during the excessively wet planting season. Logistical problems stemming from the weather also plagued U.S. grain shipments earlier this year.

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