SEPT. 24, P.M.
DEMAND and PRICE
U.S. -Rii T
U o -r ,"4
PUBLISHED MONTHLY BY THE AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE
UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
Approved by the Outlook and Situation Board, September 18, 1957
Domestic demand conditions continue at a high level and large
quantities of U. S. farm products are being shipped abroad. Live-
stock and livestock product prices continued their advance into
August and for January-August this year they averaged 7 percent
above a year ago; meat animal prices were up 17 percent. Higher
meat animal prices reflect a smaller slaughter this year than last,
especially for hogs. Crop prices declined moderately in mid Aug-
ust and averaged for the first 8 months of this year 2 percent below
a year earlier. Average prices received by farmers for all prod-
ucts were maintained in August at a level 5 percent above a year
earlier. With prices paid unchanged, the parity ratio held at 84 com-
pared with 82 in August 1956.
Farm output is now indicated near the record output of last year.
Crop production prospects improved considerably in August for cot-
ton, sorghum grain, corn,soybeans, and smaller increases were made
for a number of other crops. The crop output index of 105 percent of
the 1947-49 average is indicated for 1957, only 1 point below the record
(Coninued on page 3)
ZONMIC FACTORS AFF ING AGRICULTURE
Industrial production: Seasonally adj. 1
Total outlays, seasonally adjusted 2/
Housing starts 3/ Y/
Construction contracts awarded 5/
Manufacturers' sales and inventories: 2/
Total sales, seasonally adjusted
Unfilled orders-sales ratio 6/
Inventory-sales ratio l/
Employment and wages: 8
Total civilian employment 2/
Workweek in manufacturing
Hourly earnings in manufacturing
Income and spending:
Personal income payments 2/ 3/
Consumer credit outstanding
Total retail sales, seasonally adj. 2/
Inventory-sales ratio J/
Wholesale prices, all commodities 4/
Commodities other than farm and food
Consumer price index, all items 4_/
Prices received by farmers 1/
Livestock and products
Prices paid, interest, taxes and wage
Family living items
Parity ratio i/
Farm income and marketing: 10/
Volume of farm marketing
Cash receipts from farm marketing
_.__ :. ":_.
: unit or
: Mil. dol.
: Mil. dol.
: Mil. dol.
: Mil. dol.
: Bil. dol.
: Mil. dol.
: Mil. dol.
: Mil. dol.
: Mil. dol.
Federal Reserve Board. 2/ U. S. Department of Comerce. / Seasonally adjusted annual rates.
fu. s. Department of labor, Bureau of labor Statistics. 5/ Data published by the Department of
onnerce in the Survey of Current Business, from reports of the F. W. Dodge Corporation. 6/ Unfilled
orders for durables divided by monthly deliveries. 7/ Inventories, book value, end of month, divided by
sales. 8/ Bureau of the Census. 2/ Starting with January 1957, figures are not strictly comparable with
earlier periods because of changes in definitions of employment and unemployment. U. S. Department
of Agriculture, Agricultural Marketing Service.
Annual data for most of these items for the years 1929, 1932 and 1939-56 appear on page 31 of the
April 1957 issue of The Demand and Price Situation.
L .A .
DPS-33 3 SEPTEMBER 1957
THE DEMAND AND PRICE SITUATION
----------------- ------ ------------------
Approved by the Outlook and Situation Board, September 18, 1957
: Summary *............ **........ Wheat ...................
: General Business Conditions .... Fruit ....................
: Export Developments ............ Commercial Vegetables .....
: Farm Income .................... Potatoes and Sweetpotatqes
: Livestock and Meat ............. Dry Beans and Peas ........
: Dairy Products ................. Cotton ....................
: Poultry and Eggs ............... Wool ......................
: Oilseeds, Fats and Oils ........ Tobacco ...................
: Feed ...........................
Continued from cover page--
level in 1956. Reduced output of meat animals and eggs this year is being
largely offset by a small increase in milk output and larger production of
broilers and turkeys.
Farmers' cash receipts from marketing in the first 8 months of 1957
totaled about 1 percent more than in the corresponding period last year.
Prices received by farmers averaged 3 percent higher, but the volume of market-
ings was smaller. Livestock receipts were 5 percent above January-August last
year as larger returns from hogs, cattle, and milk more than offset declines
for chickens and eggs. Crop receipts were down 5 percent, mostly due to
smaller cash receipts from cotton, wheat and potatoes.
Farm operating costs are also running higher than a year ago, but
probably not enough to offset the higher rate of cash receipts from marketing
and Government payments. As a result, the net income realized by farm opera-
tors has been running above 1956. The annual rate for the first half of 1957
was 12.1 billion dollars, 0.3 billion above a year earlier. Preliminary
estimates for July and August indicate that net income in the July-September
quarter will run as much as a half billion dollars above the seasonally
adjusted annual rate of 12.1 billion dollars for the same period in 1956.
General business activity remained at the levels of recent months.
Consumer incomes and retail sales increased; however, there were not any
appreciable gains in employment or production. Manufacturing production and
employment continued to show some weakness, particularly in durables. Recent
estimates of expenditures for plant and equipment in the October-December
quarter indicate the same level as in the July-September quarter, and only a
fraction above the first quarter. Construction outlays, however, reached a
new record level in August.
During 1956-57 about 2 billion dollars or nearly 43 percent of U. S.
agricultural exports moved under provisions of P. L. 480, the Mutual Security
program and dollar loans. Substantial government funds for export programs
will be available again in 1957-58.
Prices of most meat animals will decline seasonally during the next 2
or 3 months, but will hold generally above last year, as total livestock
slaughter and meat production will fall a little short of a year earlier.
Prices of milk at the farm probably will continue above a year earlier
for the remainder of 1957; production is up about 1 percent from 1956 and
sales to the Government under the price-support program are running a little
above last year.
Egg prices in the next 6 to 8 months are likely to average above the
unusually low levels of a year earlier. Egg production is beginning to
reflect the cut in chickens raised for laying flock replacement, as about
5 percent fewer layers on farms are expected by January 1, 1958.
About the same total supplies of food fats will be available in the
marketing year beginning October 1 as in the current season. With a smaller
cotton crop, prices of cottonseed probably will be moderately above 1956
levels. The flaxseed crop deteriorated in August, and prices have moved up
from $3.05 per bushel in July $3.50 in mid-September.
Prices of corn are expected to decline seasonally in the next month or
so. Prices of oats and barley, though strengthening since July, will likely
continue much lower than a year ago. Indications in September point to record
supplies of feed grains and forage crops for 1957-58, and animal units to be
fed may total about the same as in 1956-57.
With increasing supplies of deciduous fruits,prices received by growers
have declined since June to 1 percent below a year earlier.
Supplies of vegetables for fresh market in early fall are expected to
be smaller than the relatively large supplies of a year earlier. Prices
received by growers during the next 4-6 weeks are likely to average somewhat
higher than a year earlier. Prices of potatoes during the next few months
will average substantially above the low levels of a year earlier; the esti-
mated fall crop is 9 percent below the large 1956 crop.
DPS-33 5 SEPTEMBER 1957
The total supply of cotton during the 1957-58 marketing year is esti-
mated to be 24.0 million bales, 3.6 million less than in 1956-57. During
1957-58 disappearance may be somewhat lover due to some cut in exports from
the record 72 million bales in 1956-57.
World consumption of wool continues to increase though U. S. consump-
tion has declined during the past year. Boston quotations for most domestic
wools in early September were up between 20 and 30 percent above a year earlier.
The 1957 crop offlue-cured tobacco, as of September 1, is estimated at
935 million pounds about one third lower than last year,'mainly due to reduc-
tions in acreage. Auction prices of flue-cured Georgia-Florida (type 14)
averaged a record 55.9 cents per pound, 16 percent above last year.
GENERAL BUSINESS CONDITIONS
Business activity in August remained at approximately the June-July
level. Consumer income and retail sales increased moderately. Industrial
production was maintained in August and construction outlays reached an all
time high. Consumer prices reached record levels in July and wholesale prices
edged up slightly into August. Prices received by farmers moved up slightly
during August, to a level 5 percent above a year earlier. Employment in non-
agricultural industries, after adjustment for seasonal influences, remained at
June-July levels with further small declines in manufacturing offset by
increases in nonmanufacturing industries. Businessmen now expect plant and
equipment expenditures to remain at the present levels for the remainder of
Personal Income Increases Moderately
Total consumer income during August was 347.3 billion dollars, on a
seasonally adjusted annual rate basis. This was 1.1 billion higher than in
July and 12.5 billion above December 1956. All sources--wage and salary pay-
ments, rents, interest, dividends, proprietors income, social security and
other Government payments--have contributed to the rise since the beginning of
the year. The largest increase was for wages and salaries, up over 6 billion
dollars from December 1956.
During the first half of 1957, wage and salary income rose in all indus-
tries except manufacturing. Wholesale trade, construction, communications and
public utilities were particularly strong. Payroll gains in the nonmanufactu-
ring area came from a slight increase in employment and average hours worked
as well as higher hourly earnings. In manufacturing, total wage and salary
payments remained at approximately the same level throughout the
first half with declines in employment of production workers, particularly in
durables, offset by increased salary payments. Total wages and salaries in
August increased 600 million dollars above July, continuing the upward trend
in the first half of 1957.
Total employment declined to 66.4 million in August, 800 thousand below
July. There were slight declines in manufacturing with slight increases in
nonmanufacturing industries. Unemployment of 2.6 million was down 400 thou-
sand from July due to the usual seasonal changes.
Retail Sales Advance
According to advance reports, retail sales in August were 17.2 billion
dollars after adjustment for seasonal influences. The one percent rise about
matched the increase in July. Sales of durable goods stores remained at
approximately the July level while nondurables, at 11.4 billion dollars, were
up 2 percent. For the year to date retail sales have more than kept pace with
the rise in personal income. Most of the gain was in sales of nondurable goods,
up more than 8 percent from last December; durable goods store sales increased
less than one percent since the end of last year.
Table l.--Sales of retail stores in the United States, July and December
1956 and July 1957 with comparisons, adjusted for seasonal
factors and trading day differences
:: Change to
Item :July : December : July : July 1957
19565 6 56 : 1957 : from Decem-
: ber 1956
:Mil. dol. Mil. dol. Mil. dol. Percent
Durable goods stores, total / : 5,514 5,814 5,863 0.8
Nondurable goods stores, total / : 10,357 10,526 11,184 6.3
Retail stores, total i/ : 15,871 16,340 17,047 4.3
Food group : 3,694 3,826 4,027 5.3
Eating and drinking places :1,191 1,194 1,257 5.3
General merchandise group : 1,763 1,738 1,861 7.1
Apparel group 956 991 1,026 3.5
Furniture and appliance group 899 932 876 -6.0
Lumber, building, hardware, farm
equipment group 968 869 938 7.9
Automotive group : 2,981 3,285 3,304 .6
Gasoline service stations : 1,150 1,164 1,281 10.1
Dru and proprietary stores 47947 525 5.6
Totas include data for minds or business not sown separately.
apartment of Commerce.
- 6 -
SEPTr ER 1957
Production Remains at July Rate
Production from factories and mines in August, at 144 percent of
1947-49 average, was the same as July. The index edged down from 147 in
December 1956 to 143 in April and May, then has recovered to 144. Most of the
production decline has been in manufacture of durable goods. Transportation
equipment and primary metals registered the sharpest declines with smaller
decreases in machinery since the beginning of 1957. Furniture and lumber manu-
facturers gained slightly. The August index of nondurable manufactures at
131 percent of the 1947-49 average, was up one point from the level in July
and December 1956.
The production of passenger cars in August was 524,854 units, the high-
est since May, and up almost 8 percent above July. For the year to date, auto
production is nearly 8 percent larger than in the first eight months of 1956.
Steel production also increased each week during August. For the week ended
August 5, production was at 79.8 percent of capacity and in the week ended
September 2, the operating rate was over 82 percent. Total steel production
in August was 9.2 million tons with mill operations at 81 percent of capacity.
Manufacturers' sales declined from February through June, and increased
3 percent from June to July, after seasonal adjustment. Most individual groups
participated in the rise, but the large increase in primary metals was influ-
enced by higher prices. In July, new orders for nondurable goods rose 2 per-
cent while orders for durable goods declined 1 percent from June levels.
Unfilled orders declined further during July to 59.4 billion dollars, about
3 billion below a year earlier. Inventory book values rose 300 million dollars
during July. Durable goods inventory charges were responsible for the entire
increase from June to July; transportation equipment producers alone accounted
Table 2.--Manufacturers' sales, orders, and inventories, July,
and December 1956 and July 1957, seasonally adjusted
July : Decem- : July Change from
Item : 1956 : ber : 1957 : December 1956
: .: 1956 : : to July 1957
:Bil.dol. Bil.dol. Bil.dol. Pet.
Manufacturers' sales : 26.8 28.8 28.9 0.3
Durable : 13.0 14.5 14.6 0.7
Nondurable : 13.8 14.3 14.3 0
Manufacturers' inventories 50.0 52.3 54.1 3.4
Durable : 29.0 30.7 31.7 3.3
Nondurable : 21.0 21.6 22.4 3.7
Manufacturers' new orders :27.7 29.0 27.1 -6.6
Durable : 14.1 14.5 13.1 -9.7
Nondurable : 13.6 14.5 14.0 -3.4
orders : 2.4 64.2 59.3 -7.6
Durable : 59.1 61.0 56.2 -7.9
Nondurable : 3,3 3.2 3.1 __-3.1
Department of Commerce.
- 7 -
Plant and Equipment Expenditures to Remain at Present Levels
According to a joint survey by the Securities and Exchange Commission
and the Department of Commerce based on returns filed in late July and early
August, businessmen expect to maintain their outlays for plant and equipment
expenditures in the October-December quarter at approximately the same sea-
sonally adjusted annual rate of 37.2 billion dollars as the July-September
quarter. Total plant and equipment expenditures for 1957 are now estimated to
be 37.1 billion dollars, up nearly 6 percent from the 1956 level of 35.1 bil-
lion dollars. While expenditures in 1957 are at a record level, the increase
on an annual rate basis from the January-March quarter to the estimated
October-December quarter is less than 1 percent which compares with an increase
of more than 12 percent during the same quarters in 1956.
It is now expected that October-December expenditures for new plant
and equipment will be higher than in the July-September quarter only in the
public utility and nondurable manufacturing industries. Declines are expected
in durable manufacturing industries due particularly to sharp reduction in
motor vehicles and equipment. Mining and railroad expenditures also are ex-
pected to decline moderately, with commercial and transportation (other than
rail) outlays at approximately the same level as in July-September.
Table 3.- Expenditures on new plant and equipment 1956 and by
quarters for 1957, seasonally adjusted at annual rates
Item : 1956 : Jan.- : Apr.- : July- : Oct.- :
: : Mar. : June : Sept. : Dec. : Year
: : : : 1/ : / :1/ :
SBil. Bil. Bil. Bil. Bil. Bil.
dol. dol. dol. dol. dol. dol.
Manufacturing : TC5 16.12 16.25 16.21 1Z'6= TG
Durable goods industries 7.62 8.09 8.31 8.32 8.16 8.22
Nondurable goods industries: 7.33 8.03 7.94 7.89 8.04 7.97
Mining :1.24 1.35 1.28 1.25 1.17 1.24
Railroad : 1.23 1.42 1.35 1.55 1.48 1.46
Transportation other than
rail 1.71 1.52 1.82 1.79 1.78 1.75
Public utilities 4.90 5.72 5.93 6.33 6.48 6.25
Commercial and other 2/ :11.05 10.76 10.40 10.10 10.06 10.14
Total : 35.08 36.89 37.03 37.23 37.17 37.03
/ Estimates based on anticipated
business in late July and August, 1(
capital expenditures as reported by
2/ Includes trade, service, finance and construction.
Securities and Exchange Commission and the Department of Commerce.
- 8 -
Construction Outlays Reach All Time High
The value of new construction outlays in August, after adjustment for
seasonal factors, reached an all time high of 3,958 million dollars, up
almost 3 percent from July, when shortages of cement and concrete products in
the Eastern and Gulf Coast sections of the United States adversely affected
construction put in place. The August level was slightly above June, and
over 2 percent above August 1956.
Private construction, seasonally adjusted, rose 1 percent above July
to 2,768 million dollars. Building activity equaled the June level but fell
slightly below August 1956. New housing starts in August were at an annual
rate of 1 million units for the first time this year, but they were 11 percent
below a year ago. Outlays for private residential buildings were fractionally
higher than in June and July but 7 percent below August 1956. Farm construc-
tion rose slightly from July to August and was over 1 percent above a year
earlier. More than seasonal increases in outlays for other nonresidential
buildings up almost 3 percent from July, were mainly due to a continued rise
of commercial buildings, and a pickup in industrial construction from July.
Spending for public construction totaled 1,190 million dollars, up
nearly 6 percent from July but less than 1 percent above a year ago. Higher
outlays were mainly for highways, schools, military facilities, and sewer
and water systems.
Prices Received Up 1 Point Prices Paid Unchanged
The index of prices received by farmers rose one point in mid-August
to 248 (1910-14=100). This was 4 percent above the level at the beginning
of the year and 5 percent above August 1956. The increase has been due to
rising prices for livestock and livestock products, particularly meat animals
and wool. The index of prices received for all crops in mid-August was 233,
the same as a year ago and 2 percent below the December index. An almost
steady decline in feed grain prices largely offset substantial increases in
cotton, tobacco, and commercial vegetables.
The index of prices paid by farmers for commodities and services,
interest, taxes, and wage rates in mid-August remained at the July level of
295. Both family living and production costs were unchanged over the month.
A small increase in feeder livestock prices was offset by a small decline in
feed prices. Prices paid are now nearly 2 percent above the beginning of the
year and up about the same amount from August last year.
With prices received up only slightly and prices paid unchanged the
parity ratio remained at the July level of 84. The August ratio was nearly
4 percent higher than last December and a little more than 2 percent above
- 9 -
S PTEMBER 1957
Wholesale Prices Increase Sigt
Wholesale prices were fractionally higher in August at 118.3 percent of
the 1947-49 average. Farm products and industrial prices rose slightly during
the month while prices of processed foods declined. Higher farm product
prices for livestock, fluid milk and eggs more than counterbalanced declines
in the other groups. Lover processed food prices were mainly accounted for
by meats, poultry and fish, animal fats and vegetable oils and cereal and
bakery products. Among industrial prices, gains were reported for metals,
metal products, machinery, rubber, chemicals and pulp and paper.
Consumer Prices at Record Levels
For the month ending August 15, prices paid by farmers for items bought
for family living held steady at the record June-July level of 287 ( 1910-14=
100). Urban consumer prices rose one half of one percent between June and
July 1957, mainly due to substantial advances in food prices and the cost of
the "other goods and services" group. Higher prices were reported for meats,
fish and poultry as well as fresh fruits, cereals and bakery products, and
restaurant meals. Fresh vegetable prices declined. All the other items ex-
cept housing and apparel shared in the rise.
Table 4.- Indexes of prices received and paid, wholesale and consumer
prices August and December 1956 and August 1957 with comparisons
Item : August :December: August : Change from
: 1956 : 1956 : 1957 : December 1956
: : :: to August 1957
Prices received by farmers : 87 87 92 5.7
Crops 94 96 94 -2.1
Livestock and products : 82 80 89 11.2
Prices paid by farmers, interest,
taxes and wage rates 115 116 118 1.7
Family living items : 115 116 118 1.7
Production items :105 106 108 1.9
Wholesale prices :114.7 116.3 118.3 1.7
Farm products : 89.1 88.9 93.0 4.6
Processed foods : 102.6 103.1 106.7 3.5
Industrial products : 122.5 124.7 125.9 1.0
Urban consumer prices :116.8 118.0 1/120.8 2.4
Food 113.1 112.9 117.4 4.0
I/ Prices for July 1957.
Wholesale and consumer prices from the Department of Labor.
- 10 -
World agricultural production reached record levels in 1956-57. Total
and per capital output of food and nonfood camodities increased in both the
free world and in the Sino-Soviet bloc. The high level of economic activity
and consumption in importing countries also raised the level of world trade
in agricultural products in 1956-57. Part of the increase over the previous
year resulted from purchases of cotton that had been deferred in anticipation
of the U. S. export sales program and by short crops of certain oilseeds and
wheat in same producing areas.
This high level of demand increased exports from most surplus producing
countries. Government export programs helped raise U. S. farm exports to
record levels and were especially effective in aiding exports to countries
with temporary or chronic balance of payments problems. During 1956-57, as
in previous years, several types of Government export programs were utilized
to meet foreign demand and at the same time to help reduce surplus stocks of
General Eport Progra
Sale of Camodity Credit Corporation stocks at competitive world prices
was perhaps the most important of these programs, especially with respect to
cotton. Sales of wheat and flour under and outside of the International
Heat Agreement were made from private stocks at prices within the range
specified by the Agreement. Subsidies are paid to exporters in kind (wheat
from CCC stocks) or, in the case of flour, in cash to cover the difference
between the Agreement price and domestic market prices. The CCC export sales
program and the wheat subsidy program facilitated straight commercial dollar
transactions as well as foreign currency sales and other special export
Special Export Programs
Special export programs designed to help move U. S. faam caomodities
into export channels are summarized below. These programs, including sales
for foreign currencies, grants, loans and barter, accounted for about 2 bil-
lion of the 4.7 billion dollars worth of agricultural exports in 1956-57.
Substantial funds for export financing will again be available in 1957-58,
including new spending authority, so-called pipeline funds (the excess of
committed funds over reported shipments or disbursements) and Export-Import
Bank loan c-amitments.
Sales for foreign currencies: Under Title I of Public Law 480 agree-
ments to sell surplus commodities for foreign currencies are negotiated with
foreign countries. Purchases under Title I as a general rule represent im-
ports over and above the quantity normally imported by the foreign country.
Each agreement specifies how the foreign currency sales proceeds will be
used. Under an amendment to P. L. 480, Congress specified that up to 25 per-
cent of the currencies received under each agreement shall be available for
- 11 -
loans to U. S. private industry for business development and trade expansion
in the foreign country and to foreign firms for purposes which would increase
the consumption of U. S. agricultural products. At the same time Congress
authorized 1 billion dollars (CCC cost) for new agreements during 1957-58,
raising the cumulative total since inception of the program in 1954 to 4 bil.
Agreements signed through June 30, 1957 involve the receipt of 2.1 bil-
lion dollars worth of foreign currencies, representing the market value of
the commodities sold including ocean transportation. More than half this
amount will be converted into low-interest long-term loans for foreign
economic development. Only about 3 percent of the sales proceeds will be
grants. The balance of the currencies will be used by the United States to
pay its obligations, purchase strategic materials, promote the use of U. S.
farm products abroad, and to meet U. S. foreign policy objectives.
Reported exports under Title I of P. L. 480 had a market value of
883 million dollars in 1956-57, about one-fifth of total farm exports in that
Sales for foreign currencies are also made under the Mutual Security
Act. Proceeds from the sales of surplus camnodities are used for mutual
security purposes (including direct forces support) in recipient countries.
The bulk of these sales proceeds are disbursed as grants of foreign curren-
cies, with all but 5 percent of the remainder in the form of long-term loans.
A number of countries use foreign aid funds to finance their normal agri-
cultural imports from the United States.
Congress authorized 175 million dollars for foreign currency sales
under the Mutual Security Act in 1957-58. Expenditures under this program in
1956-57 totaled nearly 4oo million dollars.
Direct grants and donations: A small part of Mutual Security Act
funds disbued as dollar grants are used to finance dollar sales of U. S.
farm products. In addition Title II of P. L. 480 provides for gifts of coa-
modities to friendly foreign peoples faced with emergency famine and other
disasters. Reported shipments under Title II were valued at 88 million dol-
lars in 1956-57. Title III of P. L. 480 authorizes CCC donations to private
voluntary agencies and internatia institutions for foreign distribution.
The market value of such donations in 1956-57 was approximately 160 million
dollars. Outside of the grant category, but similar to it are sales by CCC
at ncminal prices (for instance nonfat dry milk at about 3' cents per pound)
to foreign governments and international institutions for school lunch and
other programs designed to increase consumption among lw income groups. The
dollar return to CCC on such sales was 3.3 million dollars in 1956-57.
Direct loan programs: Direct short- and medium-term dollar loans are
authorized the Export- Bank on its own account and as agent for other
- 12 -
banks. The rate of interest on the most recent loans has been 5j percent.
Ioan disbursements for agricultural comnodities, mainly cotton, amounted to
68.5 million dollars in 1956-57.
Recently the Caodty Credit Corporation initiated a deferred payment
program for dollar sales of caumodities owned by it and for tobacco under
loan. The CCC credit, available to U. S. exporters, usually for periods of
6 months to 3 years, currently carries rates of interest ranging from
4 3/8 to 5 3/8 percent. Since CCC sales are considered camuercial trans-
actions, as a general rule there is no requirement for the use of U. S. flag
vessels whereas the Cargo Preference Act does apply to Export-Import Bank
Barter: The barter of CCC-owned caomodities for foreign materials
is authorized under the Corporation's Charter Act and reemphasized under
P. L. 480. Exports under barter were fairly substantial in the past few
years, and .;proximately 400 million dollars worth of surplus farm com-
modities were delivered to barter contractors for export during 1956-57. New
administrative regulations, based on the belief that barter exports were dis-
placing dollar sales, placed stringent conditions on barter exporters. Under
the new rules it is anticipated that the volume of barter transactions will
be substantially reduced.
Farmers received about 17.6 billion dollars from marketing in the
first 8 months of 1957, 1 percent more than the total of 17.4 billion dollars
in the like period of 1956. Prices averaged 3 percent higher but marketing
were down slightly. Receipts from livestock and products of 11.0 billion
dollars were 5 percent above last year because of higher average prices.
Receipts from hogs, cattle and milk were sanewhat above a year ago but
chickens and eggs were down. Crop receipts were about 6.6 billion dollars,
5 percent below last year, mostly because of smaller cash receipts fran
cotton, wheat, and potatoes.
Cash receipts from marketing in August are estimated at 2.6 billion
dollars, about the same as a year ago. Prices averaged 5 percent higher than
last year but marketing were down. Receipts from livestock and products of
1.5 billion dollars were above August of 1956 because of higher prices. Crop
receipts of 1.1 billion dollars were slightly below last year.
LIVESTOCK AND MEAT
Prices for hogs will decline during the next 2 or 3 months, as mar-
ketings build up from the summertime low. However, hog prices as well as
most meat animal prices will be above last year. Total livestock slaughter
and meat production will fall a little short of a year earlier. Reductions
in supply will be chiefly in pork and the lower grades of beef.
SEPra ER 1957
Hog slaughter is expected to continue below last year's rate until late
this year, then to rise above a year earlier in 1958. However, the increase
then will be rather small, as reports frcm 10 of the Corn Belt States indicate
that hog producers are exceeding only slightly their June 1 plans for around
a 2 percent gain in sows farrowing fall pigs. Hog prices, although declining
seasonally, will likely continue above last year through the fall, but they
may be a little below year earlier levels early in 1958.
Producers in the 10 states plan a 7 percent increase in their
farrowings for December-February, which is the first three months of the 1958
spring season. As the bulk of farrowings are in February-April, this does
not yet give clear evidence as to the probable extent of the increase in the
total 1958 spring pig crop. Some increase is definitely expected. If
moderate, it would bring only moderate price declines late in 1958. A very
large expansion would risk severe declines.
Cattle slaughter this fall will likely consist of about as many fed
cattle but fewer grass cattle than a year ago. Prices of fed cattle are
expected to remain relatively stable. However, reduced market receipts in
July and August despite more in feedlots on this July 1 than last indicate
that fed cattle marketing have been delayed saoewhat. Sizable marketing
yet to came dim the prospects for any substantial price advance in early fall.
Feeder cattle prices, supported by large feed harvests and a relatively
strong fed cattle market, may show no more than a little seasonal decline this
fall and will remain well above last fall.
Prices of sheep and lambs also might decline a little during the heavy
movement from farms and ranches this fall. As the bulge in marketing is
expected to be smaller than a year earlier, prices will likely continue above
last fall. Strength in the prices of other meat animals also is lending
support to sheep and lambs.
Prices to farmers for milk probably will continue above a year earlier
through the raainer of 1957. In August the average price of all milk to
farmers was $4.17 per hundredweight, c pared with $4.13 a year earlier. The
price for both fluid and manufacturing milk was up, with fluid up the most.
In large measure, this reflects payments above established minimum prices in
a significant number of markets.
Consumption of fluid whole milk and most other dairy products con-
tinues near last year's level, despite slightly higher retail prices. Con-
sumption of fluid cream continues the long-term downtrend but recently this
has been largely offset by continued increases in the consumption of milk.
The number of farms with milk cows has continued to decline. The aver-
age size of herd has not increased fast enough to offset this, and the total
number of milk cows in the United States showed a 1 percent reduction from a
year earlier in June. For 62 Federal order markets, total receipts of pro-
ducer milk were up 1 percent while deliveries per producer were up 5 percent.
Total production of milk in the United States for the period from
January through August 1957 was 1 percent above a year earlier--a gain of
about 800 million pounds. With good pastures in most dairy sections, large
supplies of concentrates and roughages and relatively favorable relationships
between milk and feed prices, continued larger milk production seems assured.
Total for the year will exceed the 125.7 billion pounds of 1956 by between
1 and 2 billion pounds.
The increase in total consumption of dairy products apparently has been
less than the increase in milk output and sales to Government under the sup-
port program have been running above 1956. CCC purchases, April 1 through
August 31, were equivalent to 3.7 billion pounds of whole milk compared with
3.2 billions a year earlier. The solids-not-fat volume is about equal to last
POULTRY AND EGGS
Egg prices in the next six or eight months are likely to average above
the unusually low levels of a year earlier. In the next month or two they may
rise some above mid-September, before starting their seasonal decline. Con-
sumer demand continues strong and egg production is reflecting the 18 percent
cut this year in the number of chickens raised for laying flock replacement.
In mid-September, prices to farmers for Grade A large eggs at Iowa country
points were 38-39 cents per dozen, almost the same as the peak of 1956 fall
prices, which occurred in mid-September.
The sharp cut in the number of chickens raised is likely to result in
about 5 percent fewer layers on farms January 1, 1958, than a year earlier.
But because of a higher laying rate per bird, egg production will be cut only
2 or 3 percent at that time. Egg production on farms in August was not yet
smaller than a year earlier, but it exceeded the previous August by only one-
half of 1 percent; output for the first 8 months was 1 percent above last
Consumption of eggs per person in the first 8 months this year was 1 or
2 percent below a year earlier, because output did not keep pace with popu-
lation growth. Consumption will decline further from 1956 levels (and more
than seasonally) in the remainder of the year. Storage eggs helped to sustain
July and August consumption, but storage supplies are not large enough to sus-
tain consumption in the remainder of the year at year-ago levels, and total
per capital consumption will fall from the 369 eggs of 1956. Use of eggs for
the manufacture of flu vaccine is not making appreciable inroads into the
supply of table eggs.
- 15 -
Broiler prices have fallen from their July peaks. The mid-August aver-
age price to farmers was 21.0 cents, slightly below a month earlier, and
prices declined further in September. At recent levels, however, broiler
prices were about a cent above a year earlier. Supplies are now at about the
1957 peak, but demand is declining seasonally. Prices are likely to decline
further seasonally the rest of this year. For the first 8 months of 1957,
they averaged 19.9 cents per pound compared with 20.9 cents a year earlier.
Production for the year will be up about 6 percent and consumption will be a
The number of turkeys remaining to be slaughtered in 1957 is probably
smaller than a year earlier, although the total 1957 record crop of 81 million
birds is 5 percent larger than in 1956. The increase in this year's crop was
entirely from poults hatched before My, most of which have already been
slaughtered. Storage stocks are record large for the season. Farmers'
prices, despite a slight rise since late July, remain about 6 cents per pound
below a year earlier--22.6 cents per pound in mid-August compared with 28.3
cents last year.
Farmers' average turkey prices may strengthen in the rest of the year,
as they did in the last month of 1956. Nevertheless, prices will not equal
last year's level, because large storage stocks will supplement current pro-
duction. Consumption of turkeys this year will be a record, up to about
5.8 pounds (ready-to-cook) per person, from 5.1 pounds last year. Total con-
sumption of turkeys in the first 8 months of 1957 was more than 30 percent
above last year, but the heavy consumption of turkeys comes in the remaining
months of the year. In recent years about half of the annual consumption
occurred in the holiday months of November and December.
OILSEEDS, FATS AND OILS
Total supplies of food fats in the marketing year beginning October 1,
1957 probably will be about as large as in the current year. Beginning stocks
are expected to be somewhat smaller but output will be up. Increased soybean
oil output will more than offset a decline in cottonseed oil. Little change
is expected in supplies of butter and lard.
The quantity of food fats, including oil equivalent of soybeans, avail-
able in 1957-58 would permit exports about equal to the record 2.8 billion
pounds estimated for the year just ending, and leave stocks on October 1, 1958
about the same as estimated for October of this year. While it is too early
to estimate the full-year exports, sales for dollars plus exports under Public
Law 480 are likely to result in a relatively heavy outward movement. However,
U. S. fats and oils probably will meet increased competition in world markets
during 1957-58 because of larger supplies in some foreign countries.
The 1957 soybean crop is now estimated at a record 459 million bushels,
a little higher than the estimate of last year. Acreage for harvest is record
- 16 -
SEPT ER 1957
high, but the estimated yield per acre is down from last year's near record.
Including the carryover expected on October 1, the total supply of soybeans in
1957-58 is estimated at about 470 million bushels.
Cottonseed production in 1957 is forecast at 5,231,000 tons, nearly
4 percent less than in 1956. Farm prices probably will average slightly above
the $53.50 per ton in 1956, reflecting the smaller output. The total value of
products obtained from cottonseed this fall and early winter, when farmers
market the bulk of their crop, is likely to be a little higher than last year.
Peanut output in 1957 is estimated at 1,594 million pounds, about one-
half percent less than a year earlier, but well above domestic requirements
for food and farm uses. CCC will acquire a substantial portion of the crop.
Farm prices probably will average near the support program loan value, which
is slightly lower than a year earlier.
The 1957 flaxseed crop deteriorated during August. The September
estimate of 32 million bushels is a third below 1956, and the smallest since
1952. Carryover stocks of flaxseed on July 1, 1957 were almost 20 million
bushels, 16 million of which were held by CCC and since have been sold for
export. Domestic oil use may be equivalent to about 27 million bushels and
another 4 million will be needed for seed and feed. Commercial exports will
be small during the 1957-58 season and carryover stocks are likely to be at a
minimum. Flaxseed prices (No. 1 spot, Minneapolis) have moved up from $3.05
per bushel in July to $3.50 in mid-September, reflecting the sharp drop in
On September 9, 1957, the President issued a proclamation restricting
imports of tung oil for the remainder of the current crop year and for each of
the three succeeding crop years ending October 31, 1960. This action was
taken as imports were interfering with the price support program for tung oil.
Three annual quotas of 26 million pounds each are established.
Prices of each of the 4 feed grains have been substantially lower this
summer than in the summer of 1956, with the mid-August index of prices re-
ceived by farmers down 15 percent. Corn prices have made little seasonal
gain since last fall, and mid-August prices averaged $1.23 per bushel, 22
cents lower than in August 1956. Corn prices are expected to decline in the
next month or so as the 1957 crop is harvested, but they probably will fall
less than seasonally. With the harvest of the big crops of oats, barley and
sorghum grains this summer, prices of these feeds declined below the 1957
support levels. Prices of oats and barley have strengthened since July, but
they continue much lower than a year ago.
High protein feeds also have been generally lower this summer than last,
but increases in some of these feeds Ju.n.e June brought the August average
close to that of a year earlier. Lower feed prices this summer and higher
- 17 -
prices for the major types of livestock and livestock products have resulted
in generally more favorable livestock-feed price ratios than a year ago.
Record supplies of feed grains and forage crops are in prospect for
1957-58 based on indications in early September. The 1957 growing season has
been better than average for feed crops throughout most of the country. Yields
of each of the four feed grains are above average, a record hay crop is being
harvested and pastures have furnished more feed than in any of the past 4 or
5 years. Feed grain production is now estimated at 135 million tons, about
4 percent larger than the big crops of the past 2 years. The carryover of
feed grains into 1957-58 is expected to be about 5 million tons larger than
the 43 million tons carried over last year. This, together with the prospec-
tive supplies of byproduct feeds and imported grains, would give a total feed
concentrate supply of about 210 million tons, 5 percent above last year's
The corn supply is now expected to total about 4.6 billion bushels
nearly equal to the record supply last year. The 1957 crop of 3,195 million
bushels is a little above average, but 7 percent smaller than the bumper crop
last year. The carryover on October 1, however, is expected to total around
1,400 million bushels which would be 235 million bushels larger than last
year. Supplies of oats, barley and sorghum grains are all substantially lar-
ger than last year as a result of the much larger 1957 crops of these grains.
In early September cash wheat prices were generally 6 to 10 cents above
the lows reached in August, but in mid-September they dropped again. On Sep-
tember 18, prices at Portland and Minneapolis were only 5 cents and 7 cents
above their August lows, while prices at St. Louis were back at about their
low points, and those at Kansas City even slightly below. The advance gene-
rally reflected the seasonal let-up in the movement of wheat to markets fol-
lowing harvest, while the recent decline reflected light sales for export and
also little activity in domestic markets.
On September 18, the price of No. 2 Soft Red Winter at St. Louis, at
$2.12, was 10 cents below the effective price support rate, and that of No. 2
Hard Red Winter, ordinary protein, at Kansas City, at $2.05 was 17 cents below
the effective support rate. On the other hand, the price of No.l Soft White
at Portland at $2.29, was 15 cents above the effective support rate. Supplies
of white wheat are a third lower than a year ago and export demand continues
strong. The price of No. 1 Dark Northern Spring, ordinary protein, at Minne-
apolis, at $2.27, was just at the effective support level. Supplies of this
class of wheat, while 11 percent above the 1947-56 average, are slightly below
a year ago.
Supplies of wheat for the marketing year which began July 1, 1957, total
1,836 million bushels, 203 million bushels lower than the record large supplies
last year. They are also below 1955-56 and 1954-55, but above any previous
year. Total supplies include the carryover of 905 million bushels, the crop
estimated at 923 million bushels as of September 1, and likely imports of
about 8 million bushels.
- 18 -
Domestic disappearance for 1957-58 is estimated at about 590 million
bushels, slightly above that in the past year. Assuming exports of about
400 million bushels, which are very large but sharply below the all-time
record of 547 million bushels in 1956-57, the carryover July 1, 1958 would
total about 845 million bushels. This would be 60 million bushels below the
905 million on July 1 this year.
Supplies of apples, pears and cranberries are expected to be somewhat
larger during early fall than in this period of 1956. But supplies of grapes
will be lighter. Supplies of oranges and grapefruit, now seasonally light,
will pick up sharply in October as harvesting of the new crops in Florida
gains momentum. Remaining supplies of 1956-57 crop lemons are considerably
larger than a year ago.
With increasing supplies of 1957-crop deciduous fruits since June, the
index of prices received by growers for fruit has declined, and for August
the index was about 1.5 percent under a year earlier. In early September,
grower prices for peaches, Michigan summer apples, and California grapes
varied around the levels of this time in 1956. Terminal auction prices for
California oranges and lemons were considerably lower than a year earlier.
Consumer demand for fruit probably will hold fairly steady over the next few
Growing conditions for the 1957 deciduous fruit crops continued
generally favorable during August. The main exceptions were for apples and
peaches in the North Atlantic and the mid-Atlantic States, where drought cut
prospective production, and for peaches in California. Total production of
deciduous fruits is expected to be slightly less than that of 1956. The
first official forecast of 1957-58 citrus production will be released
Available figures on 1957 packs of canned fruits in California show a
large decrease in the pack of sweet cherries, a small decrease in apricots,
but a heavy increase in brined cherries. The U. S. pack of canned sour cherr-
ies is also much larger. By early August, greatly increased movement of
strawberries to freezers in Washington and Oregon had a little more than
offset a sharp reduction in California. But the pack in several eastern
states is down this year. The packing of frozen strawberries in California is
expected to continue into fall as usual, and the late-season output in this
State will determine the size of the total pack in the United States.
Stocks of frozen strawberries in cold storage on September 1 were
8 percent smaller than a year earlier. But total stocks of frozen fruits and
berries (excluding juices) were up 13 percent. Florida packers' stocks of
frozen orange concentrate on September 7, 1957 were a little under those of a
year earlier, when movement had been slower. In contrast, stocks of canned
citrus juices were up considerably.
- 19 -
COHI ERCIAL VEGETABLES
For Fresh Market
Supplies of vegetables for fresh market sale this fall are expected to
be smaller than the relatively large supplies of a year earlier but about the
same as the 1949-55 average. For crops which account for three-fourths of fall
production, 1957 output is expected to be down 9 percent from last year. Of
the crops on which estimates are available in September, biggest decrease from
a year earlier is expected in early fall cabbage, production of which was un-
usually large last year. Substantially smaller tonnages are also in prospect
for early fall celery and spinach and slightly to moderately smaller tonnages
for carrots and cauliflower. Early fall crops of snap beans, cucumbers and
lettuce promise to be substantially above and tomatoes moderately above those
of a year earlier. Production of late fall carrots is estimated at 2.3 mil-
lion hundredweight, 14 percent less than in 1956, and late fall celery at
3.4 million hundredweight about the same as last year.
Consumer demand continues strong. If supplies of fresh market vege-
tables are about in line with early indications, prices received by growers
during the next 4-6 weeks are likely to average somewhat higher than a year
Aggreuate production of 3 important vegetables for commercial process-
ing is expected to be about 19 percent smaller than the record production of
1956, but 13 percent above the 1946-55 average. These vegetables make up
about 90 percent of totaltonnage of the 10 processing crops for which the
Department mahes regular production estimates. Output of winter and spring
spinach: was about the same as a year earlier, while production of green peas
was up 3 percent, and at a record level. Production of snap beans promises to
be 5 percent larger than last year, and near the 1954 record. Prospective
tonnage of tomatoes for processing is down 26 percent, lima beans down 11 per-
cent, beets down 18 percent, and sweet corn down 14 percent. It must be re-
ne.ibercd,however, that 1956 production of each of these crops was at record
levels. Contract cabbage for kraut is also down 27 percent from last year's
high le'. el.
Supplies of processed vegetables compared with a year earlier will not
be down nearly as much as indicated production, because of the larger beginning
stocks. However, total supplies of canned vegetables are likely to be moder-
ately smaller than the large supplies of last season. Supplies of frozen
vegetables are again expected to be at or near record levels.
POTATOES AND SWEETPOTATOES
Supplies of potatoes during the fall and winter months are expected to
be substantially smaller than the burdensome supplies of a year earlier. There
will be less overlap of marl:e';ing from the 10 percent smaller late summer crop,
- 20 -
and prospects are for a 9 percent smaller production of potatoes for fall
harvest. Indicated production of fall potatoes is up 3 percent from last year
in the 11 Western States, but this is more than offset by a 17 percent decrease
in the 9 Central States, and a 15 percent decline in the 8 Eastern States.
Prices received by growers in the first half of September were not much dif-
ferent than those of a year ago. However, the market is not expected to de-
cline as it did last fall, and during the next few months prices probably will
average substantially above the low levels of a year earlier.
During August sweetpotato prospects improved slightly. Estimated pro-
duction of 16.2 million hundredweight is 4 percent smaller than last year and
a fifth less than the 1949-55 average. Prices received by growers are ex-
pected to continue moderately above those of a year earlier.
DRY BEANS AND PEAS
Reports in early September point to a dry bean crop of 16.1 million
100-pound bags. This is 6 percent less than last year and 3 percent below the
1946-55 average. Beginning stocks were also smaller than a year earlier. With
smaller prospective supplies and substantially the same support rate as a year
earlier, prices received by growers in 1957-58 are likely to average moder-
ately higher than in the previous season.
Supplies of dry field peas in 1957-58 promise to be substantially
smaller than the burdensome supplies of last season. Although beginning stocks
were much larger than a year earlier, prospective production at 3.3 million
100-pound bags is down 29 percent from the very large crop of 1956, and 8 per-
cent below the 1946-55 average. Prices received by growers in the 1957-58
marketing year are expected to average at least moderately above the rela-
tively low prices received in the last part of the 1956-57 season.
The supply of cotton in the United States during the 1957-58 marketing
year is estimated at about 23.9 million running bales. This is about 3.7 mil-
lion bales smaller than the record high supply in the preceding season. The
starting carryover is about 3.3 million bales below a year earlier and the
1957 crop is about 0.6 million bales smaller than the 1956 crop.
Disappearance of cotton also is expected to decline, primarily because
of smaller exports as foreign countries are not expected to continue building
The carryover on August 1, 1958 will probably be more than a million
bales less than the U1.2 million on August 1, 1957. The record high was
14.5 million in 1956. The 1958 carryover may be the smallest carryover since
The 1956-57 supply of 27.6 million bales was a record high and the dis-
appearance of 16.2 million was the highest since 1926-27. The exports of
7.6 million bales, the largest since the 1932-33 season, account for the large
- 21 -
- 22 -
Spot market prices for cotton during August were 33.63 cents per pound
for Middling 1 inch at the 14 spot markets. This compares with 33.01 cents a
year earlier, 33.99 cents during July, and the average support rates at these
markets of 32.56 cents per pound.
The average daily price declined about 0.66 cents per pound from
August 1 to September 17.
During the first two weeks of the 1957-58 Australian auction season,
prices of wool declined somewhat from the closing levels of the previous sea-
son. The declines ranged up to 13 percent for some types. After the declines,
prices were about the same as a year earlier but considerably higher than in
During the second week in September, Boston quotations for domestic
wools declined to levels a little lower than a month earlier. As of mid-
September, they ranged from about the same as a year earlier for some wools to
as much as 30 percent higher for others. Prices for most wools were up
between 20 and 30 percent.
Average prices received by domestic producers for shorn wool declined a
little the past two months. The August average, 54.3 cents per pound, grease
basis, was 2.1 cents lower than that for June. But it was 13 cents above a
year earlier. During the first 5 months of the 1957 domestic marketing year
the monthly averages ranged between 5.6 and 11.1 cents below the incentive
level of 62 cents. The average for the entire 1956 season was 17.7 cents
below the incentive level.
World consumption of wool during the second quarter of this year is
estimated to have been 6 percent above a year earlier. This was the ninth
quarter in succession that it was above a year earlier. Use of other mate-
rials by the world wool textile industry was up 7 percent.
The rate of domestic woolen and worsted mill use of apparel wool during
July, was 18 percent below that of July 1956. The average rate for January-
July was 13 percent below 1956. Use of other animal fiber and reworked wool
was also down substantially but consumption of man-made fiber by woolen and
worsted mills was up 14 percent.
United States mill use of carpet wool during January-July was also
below last year. But the decline in the average weekly rate, about 5 percent,
was less than that for apparel wool.
United States imports of both dutiable and duty-free wool for consump-
tion this year have been considerably below last year. Imports of dutiable
wool during January-June were 32 percent less than during the corresponding
months of 1956. Imports of duty-free wools for use primarily in the manu-
facture of floor coverings were down 19 percent.
Auctioning of this year's flue-cured crop is well along. Marketings
in the Georgia-Florida Belt (type 14) were concluded by mid-August and are far
along in the South Carolina-border North Carolina Belt (type 13). Prices for
type 14 averaged a record 55.9 cents per pound--16 percent above last season;
prices for type 13 through mid-September averaged 59.2 cents per pound--
10 percent above the comparable period of a year ago. In the Eastern North
Carolina Belt (type 12) and the Middle Belt (type 11 b), prices through mid-
September averaged 53.6 and 55.3 cents per pound, respectively--3 and 4 per-
cent above comparable averages for last season. The auction markets in the
Old Belt (North Carolina-Virginia, type 11 a) opened September 10. Prices
during the first 4 days' sales averaged 55.9 cents per pound--ll percent
above the early season average last year. In all Belts, very little flue-cured
has been placed under Government loan in contrast with substantial quantities
The 1957 flue-cured crop,estimated as of September 1 at 935 million
pounds, is about 34 percent lower than last year when the crop was third
largest on record. The rise in carryover partly offsets the sharp reduction
in production and the 1957-58 total supply estimated at 3,446 million pounds
is 6 percent lower than the record level of 1956-57.
Cigarette output during the first seven months of 1957 was 6 percent
ahead of the same period of 1956 and cigar output was up seven-tenths of
1 percent; on the other hand, manufacture of smoking tobacco, chewing tobacco,
and snuff were each down about 4 percent. The increase in cigarette output
compared with a year ago is partly due to the introduction of new brands and
modifications of established brands.
Exports of unmanufactured tobacco during the first 7 months of 1957
totaled 218 million pounds (declared weight)--2 percent lower than in the same
period of 1956.
As of September 1, burley production was indicated to be 488 million
pounds--4 percent smaller than last year's crop. Based on September 1 indica-
tions, this year's production of fire-cured, dark air-cured, and Maryland
tobacco will be down 26, 27, and 21 percent, respectively, from last year.
Also smaller crops are indicated for most cigar types.
- 23 -
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