For farmers and commodities dealers and traders, there's a hole in the morning. Today is the day the USDA would have issued its monthly report on crop conditions and production around the country. It's the first time in 40 years there hasn't been one.
The report is the product of a huge effort. Typically, the USDA contacts about 14,400 farmers in the two weeks leading up to the report. They call, talk by email and regular mail, and they visit several hundred farms in major producing states like Minnesota during that period.
The monthly U.S. production figures also get worked into another USDA report that comes out later in the month called the World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates, or WASDE, pronounced waz-dee. Even many foreign governments rely on that data to know what's going on with farms in their own country.
A comp chart of Best Buy (white) and Netflix (orange) as if both started at 0 at the start of the year. For most of the year Best Buy and Netflix have traded places as best performing stock in the S&P 500 Index (yellow). Best Buy's gain yesterday once again gave them an edge over Netflix