Table 1. Average Absolute Errors for USDA and Private Market Forecasts of Corn and Soybean Production, 1970-2003
           
Corn Soybeans
USDA Private USDA Private
  Forecast Forecast Forecast Forecast
---%--- ---%---
August
  1970-2003 5.1 5.3 5.1 4.8
  1970-1984 5.9 7.0 4.9 4.8
  1985-2003 4.5 3.9 5.3 4.7
September
  1970-2003 4.0 4.3 3.9 3.9
  1970-1984 3.9 4.2 3.2 3.3
  1985-2003 4.0 4.4 4.5 4.4
October
  1970-2003 2.4 3.0 2.4 2.7
  1970-1984 2.4 3.1 2.7 2.7
  1985-2003 2.4 2.9 2.1 2.8
November
  1970-2003 1.2 1.6 1.4 1.5
  1970-1984 1.3 1.8 1.8 2.1
  1985-2003 1.0 1.4   1.1 1.1