Market News & Headlines >> U.S. Planting Progress Advances Favorably

U.S. corn and soybean planting continued to advance at a better-than-average pace during the week ended May 17, USDA reported on Monday afternoon in its weekly Crop Progress report. 

USDA pegged U.S. corn planting progress at 80%, three percentage points below the average of trade expectations, but nine points ahead of the five-year average and far ahead of last year’s slow pace of 44%. Soybean planting progress was estimated at 53%, three points below the average trade estimate, but 15 points ahead of the five-year average and more than triple last year’s progress of 16%. 

An estimated 43% of the U.S. corn crop was said to have emerged, up sharply from 16% a year earlier and ahead of the average pace of 40%. USDA estimated 18% of the U.S. crop had emerged, versus just 4% last year and the average pace of 12%. 

Corn planting is nearing completion in the top producing states, with Iowa progress pegged at 96%, Minnesota progress at 95%, Nebraska at 91% and Illinois at 85%.  The only clear trouble spots are in lesser producing states, with North Dakota only 20% planted, behind last year's 33% and Pennsylvania just 15% planted versus an average pace of 49%. 

Looking at the top soybean growing states, Iowa progress at 86% was nearly double the five-year average of 45%, while Nebraska at 78% planted was 36 points ahead of average and Minnesota progress of 74% was 23 points above the state's average pace. Illinois progress at 59% was 19 points ahead of average. 

Planting progress has fallen behind normal in the southern growing states of Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Tennessee, but only modestly. North Dakota at only 9% planted vs. 10% last year and 35% on average is the clear laggard on soybean planting progress.