USDA changes release time of key statistical reports in 2013

National Grain and Feed Association commends change, calls for pause in trading during release times

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has announced that the National Agricultural Statistics Service and World Agricultural Outlook Board will begin issuing several major USDA statistical reports at 12:00 p.m. EDT beginning in January 2013.

The current USDA release time of 8:30 a.m. EDT will remain in effect until January 1, 2013. USDA statistical reports affected are: World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates, Acreage, Crop Production, Grain Stocks, Prospective Plantings, and Small Grains Summary. The time for livestock reports currently released at 3:00 p.m. will not change.

The National Grain and Feed Association has commended the change. During the open comment period, the association said the USDA should shift the release of each report to a time of day when the greatest trading volume and deepest market liquidity exist. Now, the association said it continues to discuss with the commodity exchanges its previous proposal to also institute a “pause” in electronic and open-outcry trading surrounding the release times of these key USDA statistical reports to provide equal access to the data to all market participants and to allow time for the market to rationally analyze the information once it is issued.