For the second month in a row, the Purdue/CME Group Ag Economy Barometer sank to close 2017. The December reading of 126 is the second lowest reading of the year, after peaking above 150 in January.
This decline in farmer sentiment revealed in the survey shows pessimism about future prospects for the ag economy, but those surveyed are optimistic about current economic conditions in agriculture.
Although this erosion in optimism about the future, producers are seem to be more willing to make large investments in farm machinery and buildings than in 2016.
Producers were also surveyed about bringing a new generation or the next generation on the family farm and if now is a good time or a bad time to do that. According to David Widmar, agricultural economist at Purdue University, the results were split 50-50.
However, this doesn’t appear to be the same sentiment a few years in the future.
“Looking down the road, we asked if five years from now might be a better time, and a majority of respondents, 56 percent, told us they did think [it would be] time to make that sort of transition on the family operation,” said Widmar.
400 producers were surveyed.