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 farmland in the Southeastern U.S. fell 1.3% during the fourth quarter of 2011 compared to both the previous quarter and also to a year earlier, states the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond. The bank, which serves the Carolinas, District of Columbia, Maryland, Virginia and most of West Virginia, pegs the average value of district farmland at $3,221 an acre. Average farmland prices have held essentially flat since their peak in 2006.
Weather-reduced crop yields, high feed prices and continuing poor demand for nursery products and lumber due to the weak housing market are cited as reasons for the sideways to weaker trend in regional farmland values.
The survey found bankers positive about farmland price prospects for early 2012, however.
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