World Perspectives
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Brainstorming without USDA

It takes something like the current partial shutdown of the U.S. government to make those involved with agricultural markets realize how much we depend on the stream of data from USDA. The regularity of things like export sales reports, livestock reports, and estimates of production, supplies and demand are taken for granted without recognizing the amount of time, effort and expertise USDA personnel put into them. As the current blackout shows, though, the information USDA provides every day tests our own thinking, defend us from our own assumptions and biases, and is a reminder that agriculture is in a constant state of flux. While trying to make do without USDA, following are some thoughts about ag markets in general and the soybean marke...

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Market Commentary

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From WPI Consulting

Forecasting developments in production agriculture

On behalf of a private U.S. agricultural technology provider, WPI’s team generated an econometric model to forecast the movement of concentrated corn production north and west from the traditional U.S. Corn Belt. WPI’s model has subsequently provided quantitative support to a multi-million-dollar investment into short-season corn variety development. WPI’s methodology included a series of interviews with regional grain elevators and seed consultants. Emphasizing outreach and communication with stakeholders who possess intimate sectoral knowledge – on-the-ground insights – is a regular component of WPI’s methodologies, made possible by WPI’s ever-growing network of industry contacts.

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