Rates of Return in U.S. Agriculture

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by Brent Gloy

Most of those involved in agriculture understand that farming can be a volatile business, with wide swings in profitability and earnings. But just how wide are those swings and on average what should one expect in terms of a return for their investment in agricultural assets? This week we take a look at the historical experience of the rate of return on assets in agriculture. Continue reading

Big Adjustments: The Latest USDA Net Farm Income Estimates

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by David A. Widmar

The USDA recently released the latest estimates of sector-level net farm income. These data provide an overall measure of the economic and financial conditions of the agricultural sector. The latest forecast revealed a much higher forecast of net farm income than previously estimated. Those who regularly monitor these data – as Brent and I do – were surprised by the large, upward adjustment to sector income. This week we take a look at the latest data, the adjustments, and the implications moving forward. Continue reading

Sometimes Timing is Everything… An Updated Look at U.S. Farm Sector Financial Conditions

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by Brent Gloy

Last week I thought that it would be a good time to look at farm sector financial conditions, particularly some ratios of repayment capacity.  My timing could have been a little better because only a couple days after I wrote the post, USDA made an update to its farm sector income forecast.  Usually you can count on these updates to be relatively minor.  Not this time.

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