USDA slightly reduces nation's corn yield forecast

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DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The U.S. Department of Agriculture has slightly lowered its forecast for the nation's drought-damaged corn crop, from 123 bushels per acre last month to 122.8 bushels per acre in this month's report.

That yield would be the lowest since 1995.

Wednesday's USDA report keeps the estimate of corn area harvested for grain at 87.4 million acres.

Total corn production for the season is now forecast at 10.73 billion bushels, down slightly from last month's estimate. Even with this year's severe drought that would be the eighth largest corn crop on record.

Farmers planted about 96 million acres in corn, a huge increase from a decade ago when less than 80 million acres were planted.

The report is expected to stabilize corn prices which have been near record highs.

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