January 23, 2020

Ag Economy; Farm Bill Issues; Obama Bus Tour; and Trade

Agricultural Economy

Ian Berry and Doug Cameron reported yesterday at The Wall Street Journal Online that, “Extreme weather and rising feed and fuel costs across the U.S. Midwest crimped spending on farm equipment during the second quarter, according to a Federal Reserve survey.

“Bankers canvassed by the Federal Bank of Kansas City also predicted a slowdown in purchases of tractors and other equipment after farmers upgraded their machinery at the end of last year, though the land values that have underpinned investment continue to rise [related graph].

Farm income [related graph] and capital spending fell for the first time in three quarters, according to the Kansas City Fed survey, a move that could temper expectations that U.S. farmers would have a record level of financial firepower to spend on new equipment, fertilizer and seeds.”