Market News & Headlines >> Corn Planting Catches Up, Rain on Way

Monday afternoon’s weekly Crop Progress report from USDA showed the U.S. soybean planting pace ahead of the five-year average as of Sunday, with corn planting progress lagging just slightly, but wetter weather forecasts indicate delays are ahead. 

Mostly favorable conditions for fieldwork last week allowed U.S. producers to catch up on corn planting. USDA estimated 17% of the crop had been planted as of Sunday, up 11 percentage points from a week earlier and just 1 point behind the five-year average for the date, although progress still lagged behind last year’s fast pace of 28%. 

USDA estimated 6% of the U.S. soybean crop had been planted, up from 3% a year earlier and on the five-year average. However, most of the planting that has occurred so far has been in the Delta region, with planting just starting to get underway in the main Midwest production belt. 

Progress varied in the top four corn producing states, with Illinois producers having planted 34% of their corn compared 38% last year and the average pace of 28%. Nebraska producers were also ahead on planting progress at 17% versus 15% last year and an average pace of 11%. However, progress lagged in Iowa and Minnesota, with only 8% of Iowa’s crop in the ground versus 36% last year and the average pace of 14%, and only 6% of Minnesota corn planted versus 40% last year and the average pace of 17%. 

Illinois soybean planting was 4% complete as of Sunday, versus 2% last year and on average, while Nebraska soybean planting was also 4% complete versus zero last year and an average of 1%. However, no soybean planting had yet taken place in Iowa or Minnesota. Producers in the Delta continued to plant their soybeans well ahead of schedule. Mississippi’s crop was 60% planted versus an average pace of 26%, while Louisiana’s was 59% planted versus an average of 28% and the Arkansas crop was 39% planted against an average of 15%.

 Wetter weather has started to move into the western Corn Belt on Tuesday, halting fieldwork in some areas. The eastern Corn Belt should remain dry through Wednesday into Thursday before rains arrive.

 Private forecaster, World Weather Inc,. sees a wet weather pattern across most of the Corn Belt for the next two weeks, which could bring planting activity to a halt in many areas. During the next week, frequent waves of rain are expected with areas from central Arkansas to Illinois, western and northern Indiana and Michigan wettest. Multiple inches of rain are likely over the coming week in this wettest corridor and flooding is possible in a part of this region favoring areas from Arkansas to Illinois. Meanwhile, moderate to heavy rain and some significant wet snowfall is expected from eastern Nebraska to eastern Minnesota and Wisconsin.