-NOPA August soybean crush higher than expected
-NOPA August soybean oil stocks sharply higher than expected
-SBO stocks contra-seasonally rise – highest August stocks in 8 years
NOPA reported its members crushed 158.8 million bushels of soybeans in August, up from 155.1 million in July, the highest in three months and above average market expectations of 154.2 million, but still 3.8% below last year’s 165.1 million bushels. While it was the 7th consecutive month of year-over-year declines, the 3.8% shortfall was the smallest in three months following July’s 10.2% decline and June’s 8.9% decline. Based on the recent-month deviations between NOPA and U.S.-wide crush data, we would estimate August U.S. total soybean crush around 169 million bushels vs 174.7 million last year and would put 2020/21 marketing year total crush at 2.142 billion bushels, in line with the USDA’s current 2.140 billion bushel estimate vs the previous year’s 2.165 billion.
NOPA reported its members produced 1.873 billion pounds of soybean oil in August, up from 1.835 billion in July, but below last year’s 1.915 billion, with the average soybean oil yield for NOPA members during the month ticking down to 11.79 pounds/bushel from 11.83 in July, but continuing to run well above last year’s 11.60 in August.
The biggest surprise in this month’s data clearly was NOPA’s reporting of end August soybean oil stocks held by its members rising to 1.668 billion pounds from 1.617 billion in July, significantly above average market expectations for a decline to 1.555 billion pounds and expectations for stocks to be only marginally above last year’s 1.519 billion vs the data showing stocks 149 million pounds above last year. Moreover, NOPA soybean oil stocks strongly seasonally decline from June through September, with August stocks declining from July in all of the 20 years we have available data for, highlighting just how significant of an exception the recent increase in stocks is. The atypical increase on soybean oil stocks this month resulted in stocks held by NOPA members being the highest for the end of August in eight years after monthly stocks ran at historically low levels throughout most of 2020/21 so far. With the exception of an outlier in June, U.S. total soybean oil stocks have been roughly 28% higher than NOPA-member stocks in recent months. If a similar difference is seen again, nationwide August soybean oil stocks would be implied around 2.135 billion pounds vs 1.945 billion last year and would be the 2nd highest of the last 9 years, below only 2018’s 2.215 billion. Implied monthly soybean oil “off-take” (July stocks + Aug production – Aug stocks) of 1.822 billion pounds was up from 1.756 billion in July, but well below last year’s 2.015 billion and the lowest for August in four years.
NOPA reported its members produced 3.775 million tons of soybean meal in August vs 3.699 million in July and 3.884 million tons last year August, while exporting a 5-month high 857k tons of SBM vs 720k in July and 755k tons last year.