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Farmland, News Desk

Corn Belt Sees First Decline Since 1986

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Despite record numbers for both corn and soybean production, the Seventh Federal Reserve District, which includes Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, and Wisconsin, saw a 3 percent decrease in “good” farmland values for 2014. It was the first yearly decline since 1986. In addition, the fourth quarter of 2014 was the first time since the third quarter of 2009 that the Seventh District suffered a year-over-year drop in farmland values. In the fourth quarter of 2014, Illinois, Indiana, and Iowa experienced declines in agricultural land values on a year-over-year basis; in contrast, Wisconsin experienced a modest increase, and Michigan had no change.
US corn production in 2014 reached a record high of 14.2 billion bushels (2.8 percent higher than the 2013 harvest). U.S. soybean production for 2014 hit a record high of 3.97 billion bushels (18 percent higher than the 2013 harvest). According to the Chicago Fed’s AgLetter, however, at the end of 2014 the index of inflation-adjusted agricultural land values for the Seventh District was 68 percent higher than at its 1979 peak during the boom of the 1970s.

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