(The Center Square) – Farmers’ optimism about the economy is increasing, although many still worry about making future investments, according to a report released by the Agricultural Economists of the Purdue University.
The October Purdue University and CME Farm Economic Barometer showed increases in both current and long-term landscapes. In total, the barometer increased by four points compared to September to reach 110. This score is also eight points higher than that of October 2022, but lower by 11 points than that of two years ago.
“Farmers surveyed this month were somewhat less concerned about the risk of falling crop and livestock prices and felt somewhat better about the financial situation of their farms,” said the report based on surveys conducted between October 16 and 20.
Still, the report said farmers reported their lowest score of the year when it came to making significant investments in their operations. This is due to the fact that 78% of them believe that now is not the right time to make this decision.
A growing number of affected farmers cited higher interest rates as the main reason. In the October survey, 41% of these bearish farmers are worried about interest rates, up from just 25% in January.
As they begin to look ahead to 2024, 36% of respondents say rising costs of seeds, fertilizers and other essentials are their biggest concern, while 25% fear rising production rates. interest.
Corn and soybean growers have been asked about the changes they are making due to the drier conditions they have endured this year. A quarter of these farmers said they had started or increased their use of no-till farming, while 23% said they had changed the types of crops planted. One in five people say they depend on crops designed to better withstand droughts.
At the same time, optimism about the long-term value of farmland is at its highest level in two years.
“Producers who expect values to rise continue to cite demand from non-farm investors as one of the main reasons for their optimism about farmland values,” said James Mintert, Purdue professor and director from the Department of Agricultural Economics, in a video detailing the situation. report.