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Farmer Sentiment Rises as Income Prospects Improve

Farmer sunset

According to the December Purdue/CME Group Ag Economy Barometer, farmer sentiment improved modestly in December, primarily as a result of farmer’s perception that current conditions on their farming operations improved compared to a month earlier.

Although the Ag Economy Barometer rose in December, it remained 9 points below its October reading. Producers this month were markedly more inclined to say this is a good time to make large investments in their farming operation than a month earlier, as the Farm Capital Investment rose 13 points to a life of survey high reading of 93.

Their optimism was also reflected in their expectations for farmland values as the percentage of farmers who expect farmland values to rise over the next five years rose to a record high of 65 percent.

Comparing survey results from before the November election to the post-election time frame, there continues to be less optimism following the election about future ag exports and more concerns about increasing environmental regulations and prospects for higher taxes.

Additionally, the percentage of producers concerned that the farm income safety net will weaken remained higher post-election than before the election, as did the percentage of farmers expecting government support for the ethanol industry to decline.

Find the audio podcast discussion for insight on this month’s sentiment here.

Download the full report here.

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