National New Era Cash Price Midpoints for Corn & Soybeans

ifr160429–102
National New Era Cash Price Midpoints for Corn & Soybeans
Scott Irwin, Agricultural Economist - University of Illinois

The ag economists at the University of Illinois have updated their work predicting the “New Era” long range cash prices for corn and soybeans. Todd Gleason has more from the Urbana Champaign campus.

Seven years ago Darrel Good and University of…
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Seven years ago Darrel Good and University of Illinois colleague Scott Irwin predicted the average cash price for central Illinois corn and soybeans would be $4.60 and $11.20. It started with a simple idea. The last time the price of corn and soybeans had really changed was during the 1972/73 crop marketing year says Scott Irwin.

Irwin :49 …are $4.35 on corn and $10.44 on soybeans.

Quote Summary - Right. The first era was a $1.28, the second era was $2.36. The price jumped about 90%. We took that as our starting point and then realized this magnitude of jump made some sense given the market and other modeling exercises. We decided it seemed a reasonable estimate and to go with them. The equivalent numbers now are $4.35 on corn and $10.44 on soybeans.

As it turns out, those are pretty close to the actual national average monthly cash price over the first eight years of the new era. Corn has averaged $4.39 and soybeans $10.61. The fundamental question today, says Irwin, is “are these numbers still good or was the ”new era“ a temporary uptick in the market”. He is confident the numbers are solid, but cautions it was a one time move up from the old era. Pragmatically he means farmers cannot market their crop today the way they did as the move was happening.

Irwin :49 …wouldn’t expect that to last a long time.

Quote Summary - And you were rewarded for waiting, almost all the time, to do your marketing as that curve shifting occurred. I think we see the kind of opportunities in the grain markets that might be presented as the more traditional short-crop long-market-tail. If you do get that situation emerging… say corn prices, and I am not forecasting this… but let’s say there is a substantial production problem in the U.S. and corn rallied to $5.00. We wouldn’t expect that to last a long time.

There would be a quick and decisive production response in reaction to such a move in the market. The higher price then, would need to be rewarded sooner rather than later. The current rally in soybeans could be indicating just such a move, however, it would be based on poor weather conditions in South America rather than in the United States.

Irwin :23 …execute when those opportunities arise.

Quote Summary - Warning lights are flashing, that there may be opportunity ahead. Be prepared with a marketing plan, where you have some really well thought through pricing targets for your operation and be ready to execute when those opportunities arise.

You may read about the new era cash prices Scott Irwin and Darrel Good are projecting on the Farm Doc Daily website. The address is www.farmdocdaily.illinois.edu.