Market News & Headlines >> U.S. Corn Planting Accelerates

The U.S. corn planting pace accelerated last week and soybean planting continued to advance at an above-average pace amid improved weather across much of the main Midwest growing region. 

Corn planting progress remained well behind average, however, in the northwest part of the Corn Belt following the late end to winter there.

U.S. producers had planted corn on 39% of their intended acres as of Sunday, up from 17% a week earlier, but below last year’s 45% and the five-year average of 44%, USDA said in its weekly Crop Progress report on Monday afternoon.  The corn crop had emerged on some 8% of acreage, compared with 14% last year and on the five-year average. USDA said 15% of intended soybean acres had been planted, up from 5% a week earlier and ahead of the year-earlier pace of 13%, which was also the five-year average for the date. 

Corn planting progress advanced most sharply in the No. 2 producing state of Illinois, where producers planted 42% of their acreage last week, pushing overall planting progress to 74%, ahead of last year’s pace of 65% and the five-year average of 58%. Indiana producers planted 36% of their acreage last week and were 50% planted overall, versus an average pace of 33%. In the top corn state of Iowa, planting progress advanced 23 points on the week to 40%, but remained behind the average pace of 48%

The slow pace of planting in Minnesota and the Dakotas may remain a concern to the corn market. Only 9% of Minnesota’s intended corn acres had been planted as of Sunday against a five-year average of 44%, while in South Dakota, only 6% of acreage had been planted versus the average of 33%. 

Soybean planting also advanced well across the eastern and central Midwest, but lagged in the northwest, where soil temperatures were still abnormally low to start the week. In Illinois, soybean planting reached 29% complete as of Sunday, well ahead of the average pace of 12%. Some 23% of Indiana’s intended acreage had been planted, ahead of the average of 9%, while in Iowa, planting progress reached 12% ahead of the average of 11%. 

In contrast, soybean planting progress was reported at 1% for Minnesota, South Dakota and North Dakota, versus average progress of 18%, 7% and 8% respectively for the three states.