The December contract, the first month to typically reflect the year's corn harvest, fell on May 11 to the lowest level in nearly 15 months, closing at $5.05-1/4 after breaking below $5 for the first time in 17 months. Weather, said analysts, will be a significant factor, particularly in July, when plants pollinate and yields are set. High heat and dry weather could hurt plant development and reduce yield. "New crop corn will be about $4 probably after mid-July," said grains analyst Robert Bresnahan of Trilateral Inc. "A large portion of the crop was planted early and they received timely rains. I see a downtrend (in prices)."
The U.S. Department of Agriculture is currently forecasting a record corn harvest of 14.8 billion bushels, up nearly 20 percent from 2011's harvest. The corn yield estimate is at 166 bushels per acre.