Mike Walsten has covered major business trends in agriculture for more than 35 years. From the southern corn leaf blight of 1970 to today's biofuels focus, he''s lived, reported and analyzed the impact of volatile markets on farm and ranch businesses and on land prices. After growing up on a grain and livestock farm in Western Illinois, Mike graduated from the University of Illinois with an undergraduate degree in agriculture communications and a master''s degree in business administration in the early 1970s. Since then he''s covered business and management issues as well as price outlook and marketing issues in various positions with Farm Journal Magazine and Professional Farmers of America. He now applies his extensive background and analytical skills to today's surprising farm and ranch market as editor of LandOwner.
Kansas City Federal Reserve: Length of decline in farmland values equals the 1980s but not to the same extent.
Ag bankers are slightly more optimistic; 57% report stable farmland values.
NCREIF quarterly Farmland Index notes gains on income returns in the face of slight depreciation of farmland
Below break even commodity prices boost banker concerns
Farm manager survey finds excellent-quality farmland eased only slightly in first half of 2017; cash rents are expected to ease for 2018.