When the U.S. Department of Agriculture announced a slew of key farm reports would not be released on Friday due to the partial government shutdown, the phones at crop forecaster Gro Intelligence blew up.
The USDA was set to release its views on the projected size of U.S. soybean stockpiles, among other data, following a record-large domestic harvest and a trade war with China that has slowed U.S. exports.
Commodity traders, economists, grain merchants and farmers are anxious for crop updates as they work to project their financial balance sheets and make spring planting decisions.
The shutdown, now in its third week, has rippled across the already struggling U.S. farm economy ahead of President Donald Trump’s planned address at the American Farm Bureau conference in Louisiana on Monday. Federal loan and farm aid applications have also been delayed.