September 22, 2017

U.S. Farm Sector Balance Sheet

U.S. net farm income has declined approximately 49% since its peak in 2013. The balance sheet for the U.S. farm sector continues to adjust to the declines in U.S. net farm income since 2013. Specifically, asset values and debt levels have adjusted to tighter cash flows and net farm income. This article discusses changes in the U.S. farm sector balance sheet as well as liquidity and solvency ratios.

September 21, 2017

Farm Bill Issue Review: Crop Insurance and Cover Crops

The Illinois Nutrient Loss Reduction Strategy (INLRS) and other statewide efforts to reduce the loss of nutrients from modern farming include farmer adoption of cover cropping practices as one of the priorities. These efforts are increasing pressure on farmers to adopt conservation practices and innovate in their fields. Innovation brings with it concerns and risk, requiring further research and analysis. An initial policy-based concern is whether crop insurance creates disincentives to adoption and innovation. With an eye on the farm bill debate, this article reviews how crop insurance currently addresses cover cropping practices.

  • Authors: Jonathan Coppess and Gary Schnitkey
  • Permalink

September 19, 2017

Evaluating Payments from Margin Protection with Harvest Price Option

In this article, historical payments from Margin Protection are estimated and compared to Area Revenue Protection. Both insurance contracts have the harvest price option. The example is for corn in Sangamon County Illinois from 2000 to 2016. Due to limits on cost data, only payments resulting from changes in yields and commodity prices are compared. The example suggests overall payments between Margin Protection and Area Risk Plan likely will be highly correlated but payments in any given year can vary from one another. In this article, we do not consider reductions in Margin Protection payments if purchased along with another insurance product.

  • Authors: Gary Schnitkey and Carl Zulauf
  • Permalink

September 18, 2017

Weekly Outlook: Corn and Soybean Production Outlook in 2017-18

Given the price reaction, the market remains uncertain about the USDA's September forecast of 2017 corn and soybean production. November 2017 soybean futures closed at $9.68 on September 15 down seven cents on the day but up from the $9.61 close of a week ago. Despite the increase in corn yield, December corn futures prices stayed in a tight range between $3.53 and $3.55 to close out the week.

September 15, 2017

Trends in Income By Farm Type 2012-2016

Farm incomes can and do very greatly from year to year. As well, farm incomes vary by type of farm. This article will review trends in size, income for a group of Illinois FBFM member farms from 2012 to 2016. This group consists largely of grain farms with some livestock farms present as well. In 2016, 91.8% of the farms were classified as a grain farm; 1.6% were classified as a hog farm; 1.9% were classified as a dairy farm and 0.9 % were classified as a beef farm. There were 3.8% classified as other farm types. To be classified as a livestock farm of any type, the value of feed fed to the livestock enterprise must exceed 40% of the value of grain produced.

  • Authors: Brandy Krapf, Dwight Raab, and Bradley Zwilling
  • Permalink