"If I have not seen as far as others, it is because giants were standing on my shoulders." -- Hal Abelson
1. From the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City 1st Quarter 2012 — Report By Jason Henderson and Maria Akers.
(This district includes the northern portions of Illinois and Indiana,
southern Wisconsin, the Lower Peninsula of Michigan, and the state of
I have chosen some key points from this report in the bullets below:
First-quarter ranchland values climbed higher, jumping 16 percent above year-ago levels.
For the first time since the survey began in the late 1970s, the
annual value of District cropland rose more than 20 percent for two
Farm credit conditions strengthened further in the first quarter while demand for farm loans dwindled.
Several bankers noted some farmers were converting pasture ground to row crops when feasible.
The index of farm loan demand fell to its lowest level since the late 1980s.
Compared with the fourth quarter of 2011, the value of nonirrigated
and irrigated cropland in the District surged by 8 and 9 percent,
Ranchland values also shot up in the first quarter, appreciating more than 7 percent since the end of last year.
The value of nonirrigated cropland rose 25 percent above year ago
levels in the first quarter of 2012, on top of the more than 20 percent
gain posted in 2011.
The value of irrigated acreage vaulted more than 30 percent higher than a year ago, a new survey high.
Nebraska once again led farmland value gains for the District, followed by Kansas.
Selected quotes from the districts area bankers:
“There is more liquidity in the farm sector than I have seen in my 30 years as a banker.” —Northeast Kansa
“Land prices are higher and more buyers are out-of-town investors.” —Southeast Wyoming
“Pasture that could potentially be tilled is bringing significantly higher prices.” —Southeast Nebraska
From the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago 1st Quarter 2012 Report on
Farmland and Credit Conditions in the 7th District — by David B.