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Wednesday, Ju_!y 11, 1~51 AGRICULTURAL NE.VS OF TJ-IE WEEK Number 80 . Federal Reserve of Dallas GOT TON The acreage of cotton in.cultivation in the United Stat.3s on July 1 is estimated by the -USDA at 29 ,.510,000 acres according toareport r~-leased this week. This indicates an increase of .59 percent above the 18,613,000 acres in cultivation a year ago and 33 percent a.bove the 19hO-Ji9 averagA. The grea.test increases over last year are in the western states, ·l ed by California with an increase of ·129 percent, Arizona 100, New Mexico 92, Texas 86, and Oklahoma 74 percent. The acreage of cotton in cultivation in Texas on July 1 is estimated at lJ,12.5,000 ac:r-es, vs. 7 ,ol+BsOOO acres a year earlier-and 10,,988~000 acres or.. the same· date in 1949. This year's acreage is the largest since 1933, but is still far below the record high of 18,443,000 acres planted in 192.5~ · Substantial increases over the small acreage planted last year are· , · reported for all sections of Texas. Record large acrea~es are indicated for the· High· .Plains, tha Lower Valley, and the~Trans-Pecos areas-:: all re la.ti vely nigh-. yieiding areas!D The acreage in east Tex3.s is smaller than in 1949., The acreage of cotton in the United States, as announced by the USDA, .. is a million or more acres above the average of most private estimates made in late June. Reaction in the cotton market was immediate and sharp, as prices tumbled almost $3 per bale the day the of'ficial estin1ates were released and fell further the following dayo On Tuesday, July 10, Middling 15/16-inch cotton averaged 42689 cents per pound in the 10 designated spot markets) compared with 44.9.5 cents a week earlier~ Prices of other grades and staple lengths fell accordingly. Cotton prices are lower than at any time since last Decen:ber. The effect of the acreage announcement was reflected aLo in the cotton futures market, as was to be expected. October futures closed in New Orleans on : Tuesday of this week at 35(. 23 cents, compared V'lri th 36. 24 a week ago and 37. 30 a month earlier. The extended drought in soutl:.ern counties of Texas has taken a heavjtoll of the cotton acreage in-that area, and conditions there are very serious. In other sections of the Southwest, hcrwever, condition of the cotton crop is fair to excellent, with the crop at all stages of growth-.--The state of ~~lti_~ti0~- is good; and insect infestation is light. j GRAINS Cash grain prices on the Fort \ifartt-Grain Exchange have made few significant· changes during the past week and are within a few cents of levels maintained for several weeks. The 'Texas wheat crop now being harvested is estimated by the USDA at 16.3 million bushels, the poorest crop since 19360 Last year's crop was· only 22.7 million, compared with 100 million bushels in 1949. The Texas corn crop is forecast at 50 mi-lion Lushels, on the basis of 21. .5 bushle s per acreM,J 2. 4 million acres. This compa.res v.ri th 66 million bushels produced last year and .58 million in 1949~ The rice crop in Texas is forecast at 11.3 million bags (100 lbs.), compared with 11.' S 1ili-1lion in 1950 and 10. 7 rr.illiun in 194Y. The Secretary of' Agriculture announced lc;.st week that there will be no acrea~e allotments and no mnrk0ting quote. s on 19)?-crop i,. ·heat. Depai tment of "icials statect that the supply of wheat durin 0 the -15)0 -)JmB.rKeting yea.· is expected _Wednesday, July 11, 1951 Page 2· AGRICULTURAL NEWS OF THE WEEK :Jurr.oer O to be below the quantity specified for marketing quotas in existing legislation and that the continuing need for food in the uncertain world situation makes it advisable not to establish acr~ag~ allotments for the 1952 crop. LI VES T0 CK Livestock prices on the Fort vrorth market generally are holding steady, although lambs and classes of cattle have sho1i1m some weakness. Feeder and stocker steers, for example, are down to $35. 00 per c •rt., top price, compared ~~th ~37.00 a month ago; slaughter calves are selling up to $35.00, vs. $36.00 a week ago. Spring lambs are bringing as high as ~32.50 per cwt., or $2.00 less than at this time lastffiOrith. The belief held by some livestock market specialists a few weeks ago that lower meat prices are in prospect this fall, Vlhether there a-re rollbacks or not, appears to be gaining support. Meat supplies are going to be heavy in late summer and fall, as large numbers of cattle and hogs reach the market; on the other hand, there are reports th.at consumer demand for meat at present prices is waning. une USDA official is quoted as saying that 11 the housewife simply isn't buying meat like she was a month ago. 11 some 1 ~ I S C E 1 L AN E 0 US The 1951 Texas flaxseea crop is estimated at only 61._i,OOO bushels, compared with l.J million bushels in 1950 and almost 2 million bushels in 1949. The mid-June index of prices received b; Texas farmors for all agricultural commodities is-380 percent.or the 1910-14 base, or 3 percent (13 index points) under a month earlier and i9 · points belovr the pec:·k in r pril. Offers of $1. L~O per pound for adult and $1. 90 per pound for kid mohair in Texas were refused by goat ra.isers last 1:eek, accordin to thr: PMA. Farmers in the US spent $1.6 billion to build, improve, and repair their houses and other farm buildings in 1949, accor ing-·toa survey,-the ·res1i1fi,-of which have just b.~ en r eleased by the USDA. Of this amount, $935 million wcmt for house building, impr·ovement, and repair; $690 million was for service buildings. From a study of the transportation si tuat:i. m, the USDA has concluded that the shortage of boxcars, which has been espcciall severe this spring, will arise again in a fevmonths, when the heavy crop movcmerts will coincide with the seasonal increase in demand for boxcars for industrial use. Shortages arc partially a matter of total car supply in relation to Q.emand but are also part· ally a matter of geo!"l'raphic location, which accounts fol~ the fact that boxcar surpluses usually exist in some areas even during periods of shorta es. Steps are b~ing taken to minimize car shortagts by advance planning of car movements; a1so, Federal agencies are making special efforts to xpcdite the movement of cars, to utilize fully the carrying ca· a cit:y of available cars, nd to reduce tran~porta ti on bottle1ecks at ports . 1 M. Pritchett Agricultural Economist