2017 Net Farm Income Forecasted Lower, But Conditions Better Than a Year Ago

By David Widmar and Brent Gloy

Last week the USDA provided an update on net farm income estimates, including the first look at 2017. With this report, the USDA confirmed net farm income would be lower for the fourth consecutive year. However, the USDA’s latest estimates were not all bad news. This week’s blog post analyzes the latest USDA estimates and why conditions in 2017 are better than the outlook a year ago. Continue reading

Why Soybean Acres Aren’t a Clear Winner in 2017

by David Widmar and Brent Gloy

If you ask three economists the same question, you’re likely to get (at least) three different answers. While soybean acres seem to have an advantage going into the Spring, particularly in Indiana and the Eastern Corn Belt, we thought it would be valuable to evaluate university crop budgets from across the Corn Belt.  This week’s post takes a look at recent crop budgets and why additional soybean acres in 2017 might not be a clear winner for producers in all regions of the country. Continue reading

Agriculture and Exchange Rates: It’s Complicated

by David A. Widmar

Even though trade is important to U.S. agriculture, exchange rates are often overlooked. Currency exchange rates have been an important topic in recent years as the Dollar has trended stronger- or become more expensive – since 2012 (we’ve written about here and here). This week’s post is an updated look at exchange rates and how trends changed in 2016.  Continue reading