USDA points to US soybean crop and stocks in 2024/25 above market expectations

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Porto Alegre, May 14, 2024 – The May report from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) caught the market’s attention last week, diluting some of the recent speculation related to problems in Rio Grande do Sul and strikes in Argentina. The May report is usually very important for the market, as it brings the first USDA estimates for the new season. The Department confirmed the expected bias, pointing to a super crop and larger stocks in the US in the 2024/25 season. However, the numbers were above what the market expected, bringing a more bearish tone to the report.

USDA indicated that the US soybean crop is expected to reach 4.450 bln bushels in 2024/25, equivalent to 121.1 mln tons. Yield was indicated at 52 bushels per acre. The number exceeded market expectations of 4.43 bln or 120.6 mln tons.

Ending stocks are projected at 445 mln bushels or 12.11 mln tons. The market was betting on a carryover of 432 mln bushels or 11.76 mln tons.

USDA is estimating US exports of 1.825 bln bushels (49.67 mln tons) and crushing of 2.425 bln bushels (65.99 mln tons). These were the first numbers for the new season.

For 2023/24, the Department indicated carryover stocks of 340 mln bushels (9.25 mln tons), repeating the previous report and within market expectations, of 341 mln bushels (9.28 mln tons).

Regarding the global picture, USDA projected a global soybean crop in 2024/25 of 422.26 mln tons. For 2023/24, the forecast is 396.95 mln tons.

Final stocks for 2024/25 are estimated at 128.5 mln tons, above the market forecast of 120 mln tons and the estimate for 2023/24, of 111.78 mln – the market expected 112.4 mln.

For Brazilian production, USDA reduced the production estimate to 154 mln tons, compared to 155 mln in the previous report and 152.6 mln in the market forecast. The first estimate for 2024/25 is 169 mln tons.

For Argentina, the forecast for 2023/24 was maintained at 50 mln tons, against market expectations of 49.5 mln. For 2024/25, the initial estimate is 51 mln tons.

Chinese imports in 2023/24 were maintained at 105 mln tons. For next season, the forecast rises to 109 mln tons.

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