The following commentary does not necessarily reflect the views of AgWeb or Farm Journal Media. The opinions expressed below are the author's own.
Mike Walsten has covered major business trends in agriculture for more than 40 years.
The value of irrigated and non-irrigated cropland rose 14.7% and 16.6%, respectively, in 2010, according to the most recent survey conducted by the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. The bank, which serves Minnesota, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, northwestern Wisconsin and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, found the ranchland values rose 7.4%. The bank survey also found cash rents for irrigated cropland rose 14.4%, 10.4% for non-irrigated cropland and 5.3% for ranchland. Nearly two-thirds of survey respondents said the number of land sales decreased or were unchanged..
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The value of "good" agricultural land jumped 12% in 2010, the second largest increase in 30 years. That's according to the most recent survey conducted by the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago. The survey found the gains in land values in Illinois, Indiana and Iowa greatly out-paced the increases reported in Michigan and Wisconsin -- states hammered by the economic recession and severe financial pressure in the dairy industry.
On an annual basis, land values surged 18% in Iowa, 12% in Indiana, 11% in Illinois, 4% in Michigan and 7% in Wisconsin. The district saw values rise by 6% during the fourth quarter compared to the third quarter. Iowa again lead the charge with an 8% rise followed by Illinois at 7% and Indiana at 6%. Wisconsin reported a 2% increase during the fourth quarter versus the previous quarter while Michigan saw values slip by 1% quarter-on-quarter.
The value of irrigated and non-irrigated cropland rose 14.8% and 12.9%, respectively, in 2010, according to the most recent survey conducted by the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City. The survey also found the value of ranchland rose 9.2%. The bank, which serves Kansas, northwest Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma and the mountain states of Colorado, Wyoming and northern New Mexico, found gains in cropland values in Oklahoma and Mountain States were muted compared to those in Kansas, Missouri and Nebraska due to drought. The survey also said average cash rents rose 6%.
Financial publication Investor's Business Daily recently took an in-depth look at farmland returns. While not stating anything new to farmers and farmland owners, the thrust of the article is interesting -- especially when you consider they are writing to a non-farmer investment audience. Click here to see what they are telling their readers.
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