On November 15, 2011, the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago held a conference to explore the factors contributing to large increases in agricultural land values and cash rental rates in the Midwest. Farmland values increased 16 percent from a year ago in the first quarter of 2011; 2011 cash rents for farmland increased 16 percent as well. At the conference, experts from academia, industry and policy institutions will present research on the causes of rapid increases in agricultural land values and cash rents, as well as their interrelationship. The goals of the conference include analyzing demographic and geographical characteristics of Midwest farmland ownership; understanding the dynamics of farmland valuations; assessing the risks facing agriculture and the banking industry from rising farmland values; and discussing policy implications for agricultural lending stemming from current farmland trends. Check back in the near future for additional details.
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