Bloomberg writer Andrew Mayeda reported Thursday that, "President Donald Trump is preparing to slap tariffs on Chinese goods early Friday, the first shot in a trade war between the world’s two biggest economies. Tariffs on $34 billion of Chinese goods are scheduled to take effect at 12:01 a.m. in Washington, the U.S. Trade Representative confirmed in an email Thursday. The milestone marks a new and damaging phase in a conflict that has roiled markets and cast a shadow over the global growth outlook."
Financial Times writer Gregory Meyer reported on Monday that, "US soyabean futures have tumbled to the lowest price in nine years as the market succumbs to healthy growing conditions and fears over imminent tariffs from China." Amid this climate, Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue visited with producers in the northwest earlier this week and heard first hand concerns about trade and the current financial environment. With this background in mind, the USDA's Economic Research Service (ERS) released a timely update on Monday that painted an interesting "snapshot" of the U.S. ag economy titled, "Current Indicators of Farm Sector Financial Health."
Today's update looks briefly at recent reports from the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas and the University of Nebraska at Lincoln that shed light on trends in farmland values. Also, a recent survey from Iowa State University that provides statistical insights into farmland owners, is examined. Lastly, news articles that continue to look at the deteriorating prices of some agricultural commodities, and their resulting potential negative impacts on farm financial well-being, are also discussed.
Washington Post writers Caitlin Dewey and Erica Werner reported on Thursday that, "The Senate passed its version of the $428 billion farm bill Thursday, setting up a bitter fight against the House over food stamps, farm subsidies and conservation funding."
News articles over the past several days have highlighted heightened U.S. trade policy risks and recent declines in the price of corn and soybeans. Farm state Senators expressed their concern regarding executive branch trade policy, and its impact on the U.S. agricultural sector, to Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross at a recent Finance Committee hearing. Meanwhile, Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue indicated in a recent opinion column that, "The U.S. has to stand up to China's abusive trade practices like intellectual property theft. And we won't leave farmers to face Chinese bullying alone."
House Agriculture Committee Chairman Mike Conaway (R., Tex.) was a guest on Friday’s “Adams on Agriculture” radio program with Mike Adams. After failing to pass on the House floor last month, the measure succeeded on Thursday by a narrow 213-211 margin. Chairman Conaway discussed Farm Bill issues going forward in anticipation of the Senate passing its version of the Bill, and the subsequent formation of a conference committee.
Wall Street Journal writers Jesse Newman, Heather Haddon and Siobhan Hughes reported on Thursday that, "The House on Thursday narrowly passed a Republican-written bill that reauthorizes farm programs while also imposing controversial new work requirements on food-stamp recipients, acting on legislation that is important to a critical GOP constituency before the midterm elections. The bill passed on a 213-211 vote."
In conjunction with positive early season crop condition ratings, an ongoing and escalating trade dispute between the U.S. and China put negative pressure on corn and soybean prices Tuesday. Meanwhile, The Wall Street Journal indicated that the administration is 'working on measures that will have the backs of farmers,' as the trade dispute unfolds. Separately, farm state lawmakers stressed the importance of global markets for agricultural producers, who have already been struggling with lean farm income.
Last week, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Economic Research Service (ERS) released a timely report regarding farm policy titled, "Federal Risk Management Tools for Agricultural Producers: An Overview." Today's post recaps highlights from the ERS report.
Bloomberg News reported on Friday that, "Trade tensions between the U.S. and China ratcheted higher after the Asian nation said it will follow through on plans to levy tariffs on a range of American farm goods including soybeans and corn."