ASA Chairman Reports from Federal Reserve Bank of KC Food and Ag

first_imgASA Chairman Steve Wellman attended the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City Food and Agriculture Roundtable, Jan. 15-16. Attendees represented the agriculture industry, including production livestock and crops, processors, lenders, manufacturers, transportation, energy and economists. Given the uncertainty in the economy, the Kansas City Fed is interested in investments such as farmland, equipment, machinery, buildings, infrastructure and how these are being financed.Industry executives presented information and led discussion on topics such as farmland markets, the livestock sector, crops, China and global agricultural investments. Agricultural land values continue to be strong, mainly led by crop values and lack of other investment with a greater return on investment.An unanswered question is how long before land values stabilize or drop, and what will cause this to happen? Wellman reports that factors mentioned at the roundtable included Chinese demand for agricultural products, renewable fuels and fertilizer production, energy pricing and the ability to obtain profits in the livestock sector.Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City President and CEO Esther George gave an economic update, saying that gross domestic production, housing construction stabilizing and auto sales increasing indicate the U.S. economy continues to slowly recover. Also, U.S. consumers and businesses have been lowering their debt, while banks build capital. Financial stability and inflation will be long term factors impacting our economy, George says.last_img read more