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USDA Raises Farm Income Estimates for 2016
USAgNet - 08/31/2016

The U.S. Department of Agriculture forecast that farmers will see more profit this year than it previously predicted as costs declined for feed, fuel and fertilizer. According to Bloomberg News, U.S. farm net income will be $71.5 billion in 2016. That's 30 percent more than the agency's February estimate, though still 11 percent smaller than 2015's net income.

Profits have tumbled from their $123.8 billion peak in 2013, when agricultural commodity prices were stoked by rising global demand, a domestic drought that crimped supplies of corn and cattle, and a virus that devastated hog herds. Crop and livestock inventories have recovered since then, creating surpluses that continue to depress prices and reduce revenues.

U.S. farm expenses will fall to $306.5 billion this year, which would be the first consecutive annual decline since 1986. In February, the agency estimated costs of $324.8 billion.

The agency earlier pegged the country's 2016 corn and soybean crops at all-time highs, with corn yields also expected to reach a record. Inventories of corn, soybeans and wheat are all expected to rise in the next year, the USDA said.

Meanwhile, the U.S. farm debt-to-equity ratio will increase for a fourth straight year.

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