Cash Rents Move Lower Across Corn Belt

Cash Rents Move Lower Across Corn Belt

by John Newton
With lower commodity prices in recent years, many have wondered when asset values in cropland, farm real estate and cash rents would begin to decline in proportion to the declines in farm cash income. Prior to 2013, the correlation between cash rental rates and net cash income was nearly 90 percent. However, since 2013, a much lower level of correlation — driven by low real estate interest rates — has been observed at 22 percent, Figure 1.  USDA’s most recent survey of cash rents along with the annual Land Values Summary confirmed that cropland, farm real estate and cash rental rates remain slow to adjust to this new period of lower farm income.
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