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.
Two recent surveys by key federal reserve banks give us a snapshot of the strength in land values at mid-year. The surveys are conduced quarterly by the Federal Reserve Banks of Chicago and Dallas. The Chicago survey of agriculural bankers covers that regional fed's service area, which includes all of Iowa and Wisconsin, lower Michigan and the northern two-thirds of Illinois and Indiana. That survey found the value of good quality cropland rose 15% across the district for the year ending June 30. Illinois led the increase, posting an annual surge of 17%. Indiana followed with a 16% annual gain. Iowa notched a 15% increase. Michigan and Wisconsin posted 14% and 13% rises, respectively. The survey also found 37% of respondents expected values would rise during the current third quarter while only 2% thought values would decline.
The Dallas survey covers ag bankers in that bank's service area, which includes all of Texas, northern Louisiana and southern New Mexico. The bankers indicated the value of dryland cropland jumped 18% for the period ending June 30. Irrigated cropland rose 12.5% and ranchland increased 11.8%. Survey respondents indicated demand was moderating and 73% reported they expected land values will be flat during the third quarter.
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