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Continued strength in commodity prices boosts farmer sentiment

Ongoing strength in commodity prices contributed to an improvement in farmer sentiment, according to the latest Purdue University/CME Group Ag Economy Barometer.

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

“That’s largely a reflection of the boost in commodity prices we’ve seen,” he says. “If you look at prices, for example, for corn and soybeans from when we did the survey in March to when we did the survey in April, they were both up significantly. That was the driver. When you look at our budgets, it now looks like for corn and soybean producers, 2022 is going to be, assuming normal yields or trendline yields, about as good or maybe a little bit better than 2021 despite the fact we have these really high input prices.”

The survey says Eastern Corn Belt cash prices for corn in mid-April rose more than 10 percent above their mid-March level while bids for fall delivery of 2022 crop corn climbed 20 percent over the same period.

Mintert tells Brownfield farmers are more optimistic in their farm’s financial performance.

“People are definitely saying the financial picture looks stronger now than it did earlier in the year,” he says.

The Farm Financial Performance Index rose eight points to a reading of 95. That’s up 12 points from January and February.

The overall ag economy barometer rose eight points to a reading of 121 in April. Despite the increase, the index is 32 percent lower than a year ago. The index of Current Conditions rose 7 points to 120, while the Index of Future Expectations was up 9 points to a reading of 122.

The monthly national survey of 400 U.S. agricultural producers was conducted from April 18-22.

Audio: Jim Mintert

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