Though the cost of corn remains high, at least it seems to have found a practical top for the time being.

"The recent run-up in corn prices appears to be over, at least for now," says Derrell Peel, Oklahoma State University ag economist. "Much of the price increase was based on expectations about new ethanol demand but the fact is most of that increase isn't a reality yet. Corn futures also indicate corn markets have topped for now. It's possible corn prices could actually retreat somewhat depending on how feed use, exports and other market segments adjust to the higher prices over the winter, although prices are likely to remain well above year-ago levels. At any rate, corn prices aren't expected to continue increasing anywhere near the rate seen recently, if at all."

For the week ending Nov. 19, according to the National Ag Statistics Service.

  • Corn -- 94% is harvested, which is 4% behind last year and 1% behind the five-year average.
  • Soybeans -- Growers have harvested 96% of the crop, compared to 99% at this time last year and 97% for the average. Harvest lagged behind normal in the eastern Corn Belt and Ohio River Valley. Kentucky growers are 15 points behind the normal pace with just 77% of their acreage harvested.
  • Winter Wheat -- 92% of the crop has emerged, 1% ahead of last year and the five-year average. 57% is rated good or excellent, compared to 55% at the same time last year; condition has declined slightly in the past two weeks.
  • Sorghum -- 89% has been harvested, compared to 91% last year and 88% for average.