Survey: farmers more optimistic about financial position


Survey: farmers more optimistic about financial position

Producers are more optimistic in their farms’ financial position, according to the latest Purdue University/CME Group Ag Economy Barometer.

Jim Mintert is the director of the Purdue Center for Commercial Agriculture.

“We got to the end of 2021 and producers looked back on their financial situation and how things turned out and felt pretty good about that,” he says. “In that year-end timeframe, people update income statements, look at their balance sheets, and start tax preparation. And, I think there is recognition of the combination of good yields and strong prices particularly for some of the later sales from the 2020 crop and any sales made for the 2021 crop.”

The overall Ag Economy Barometer rose nine points to a reading of 125 in December. The index of Current Conditions was up 18 points at 146 and the Index of Future Expectations rose four points to a 114.

He says that’s the second month in a row that farmers reported a stronger financial performance for their farms.

“People are feeling better about their current financial situation, what they’re concerned about is what’s going to take place in the future. It’s that uncertainty about what 2022 looks like and perhaps beyond that’s holding back the overall barometer, the Index of Future Expectations, and some of the other readings as well.”

The Farm Financial Performance Index was up seven points to 113, the index’s highest reading since May. Unlike the overall barometer, this index was stronger than any readings before the pandemic. Two years ago, the financial index was 89, or 21 percent lower than this month’s reading.

The monthly national survey of 400 agricultural producers was conducted Dec. 8-14.

Audio: Jim Mintert