Iowa farmland values down again; credit is tightening
Iowa farmland prices dropped 3 percent in the fourth quarter of 2104 and 5 percent over the year, the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago said. In the five states that make up the Chicago Fed’s district, prices were down 1 percent in the quarter and 3 percent for the year. The decline in land prices came even as the district experienced the third-highest corn harvest and a record harvest of soybeans, while commodity prices have declined. The Chicago Fed report is based on responses from 199 agricultural banks. Repayment rates on non-real estate farm loans were much lower in the fourth quarter compared with the year-ago period, according to the report. Higher rates of loan renewals and extensions reflected a tightened credit environment. Moreover, for 2016, almost 2 percent of farm loan customers were not expected to qualify for additional operating credit at the banks of the survey respondents, according to the Chicago Fed.