Fundamentally Speaking

USDA Pegs U.S. Soybean Yield Record High in August Report

Joel Karlin
By  Joel Karlin , DTN Contributing Analyst
Chart by DTN Contributing Analyst Joel Karlin

USDA must have seen some unbelievable soybean potential out there to forecast a yield of 53.3 bushels per acre (bpa), 2 bpa above the average trade estimate.

This jumped production by 290 million bushels (mb) to 4.425 billion bushels (bb) just 3 mb lower than the record crop seen two years ago on 5.4 million fewer acres.

This yield would be 6.6% above the 30-year trend of 50.0 bpa if that were to be achieved.

Similar to what we did with corn, this graphic shows the USDA August soybean yield projection on the left-hand axis vs. the change from August to September and August to the final report on the right-hand axis, both in bpa.

We have also highlighted those columns in a darker shade that have the USDA August U.S soybean yield projection at a record high as it is the case this year.

We have covered the period 1980-2019 and of these 40 seasons, there were only five instances where the USDA projected the new crop soybean yield at a record high in its first official crop production report, half of the 10 instances since 1980 where USDA pegged corn yield at record high in its August report.

Of all the years, the average change from the August to the September report was unchanged and the average change from the August to the final report was up 0.5 bpa.

For those five years where the USDA pegged the August yield at a record, the August to the September change was up 0.5 bpa and increased by an average of 1.2 bpa into the final report.

Note the past three times the USDA pegged the U.S. soybean yield at a record in the August crop report the final yield went up from there by an average of 2.4 bpa.


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