Lower yields keep Fed Seventh Dist. farmland values from rising

Chicago Federal Reserve bank officials say fourth quarter 2019 farmland values in the Fed’s Seventh District were the same as the fourth quarter of 2018. They do say, however, there’s room for optimism because of a one percent increase from the third quarter of 2019. Bankers say lower corn and soybean yields this past year kept farmland values from going up compared to 2018. In the survey of 142 agriculture bankers across the District, four out of five expect farmland values to be stable this first quarter of 2020. The District’s agriculture credit conditions showed signs of improvement in the fourth quarter, but agriculture bankers say they expect more than two percent of current agriculture borrowers won’t qualify for operating credit this year. Respondents say almost 6 percent of borrowers had major repayment problems in the fourth quarter, but that’s a slight improvement from a year ago.

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