The U.S. Department of Agriculture today announced that the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) and World Agricultural Outlook Board (WAOB) will begin issuing several major USDA statistical reports at 12:00 p.m.EDT beginning in January 2013. The current USDA release time of 8:30 a.m. EDT will remain in effect until January 1, 2013. USDA statistical reports affected are: World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates, Acreage, Crop Production, Grain Stocks, Prospective Plantings, and Small Grains Summary. The time for livestock reports currently released at 3:00 p.m. will not change.
Between June 8 and July 9, 2012, USDA sought public comment on the release times for several major statistical reports in response to changes in market hours by major commodity exchanges. Stakeholders submitted 147 comments through the NASS online response site and via letter and e-mail. The comments received may be viewed on the NASS website at http://www.nass.usda.gov/Newsroom/2012/Public_Comments_Release_Times.pdf.
“USDA considered all comments and thanks everyone for their thoughtful suggestions,” said USDA Chief Economist Joseph W. Glauber. “The shift to a noon release allows for the greatest liquidity in the markets, provides the greatest access to the reports during working hours in the United States, and continues equal access to data among all parties.”
Under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Statistical Policy Directives 3 and 4, rules are in place to regulate the public’s access to federally generated statistics. The 2012 official published schedule for all NASS reports is available online at www.nass.usda.gov/Publications/index.asp. The World Agricultural Outlook Board (WAOB) report schedule is available at www.usda.gov/oce/commodity/wasde.