Economic Tidbits

More Nebraska Grain in Storage

The USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service reports old crop corn stocks in Nebraska on September 1 totaled 233 million bushels, up 11 percent from last year. Stocks in on-farm storage were up 30 percent compared to 2018, while stocks in off-farm storage were up just 3 percent. On-farm stocks accounted for 34 percent of the total stocks in storage. Nebraska had the fourth highest amount of corn in storage, trailing Illinois, Iowa, and Minnesota. Overall, U.S. corn stocks were down 1 percent.

Stored soybeans in Nebraska equaled 64.1 million bushels, up 57 percent. On-farm stocks totaled 10.5 million bushels, up 91 percent compared to last year, and off-farm stocks were up 51 percent. Nationwide, soybean stocks were up 108 percent overall and stocks stored on farms were up 162 percent.

Nebraska sorghum and oats stocks were also up compared to last year while wheat stocks were about the same at 71.5 million bushels.

The growth in grain stocks suggests farmers are using grain storage as a risk management strategy with the hope it will provide greater marketing flexibility and returns. The increase in stocks might also indicate farmers are not being forced to grain stocks in order to cash flow their operations. They are either maintaining a comfortable working capital level or their lending institutions are working with them to provide flexibility when marketing production. At the same time, the increase of stocks in storage also raises the question of where this year’s crop might go.

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