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Survey says farmers less inclined to make capital investments on farms

The head of Purdue University’s Center for Commercial Agriculture says profitability concerns have farmers less inclined to make capital investments on their farms.

Jim Mintert says the Farm Capital Investment Index declined again in the latest Purdue University/CME Group Ag Economy Barometer. “Last fall, in October, for example, only 7% of the people who think it’s a bad time to make investments said it was because of uncertainty about profitability,” he says. “This month, that tripled it’s up to 22%.”

But, he tells Brownfield profitability still isn’t the top reason the index continues to slide.  “Pointing to things like rising interest rates, the high cost of machinery, and new construction,” he says. “But people are becoming more and more concerned about profitability and what that’s going to do to their ability to, for example, pay for large investments.”

Mintert says rising input costs and lower crop and livestock prices remain the top two concerns for farmers in 2024, both of which contribute to ongoing profitability concerns.

The Ag Economy Barometer surveys 400 U.S. agricultural producers each month regarding the status of the U.S. farm economy.

AUDIO: Jim Mintert, Purdue University Center for Commercial Agriculture

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