US Midwest farmland prices soften in third quarter-Chicago Fed

CHICAGO Thu Nov 14, 2013 3:00pm EST

CHICAGO Nov 14 (Reuters) - Farmland prices in the heart of the U.S. Corn Belt softened in the July-September quarter from the prior three months and overall values in the top corn producing state of Iowa eased 1 percent, tracking grain prices lower, according to a quarterly survey of agricultural bankers issued on Thursday by the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.

For the district overall - which stretches across Iowa and northern Illinois and Indiana as well as Wisconsin and Michigan - farmland prices were up 1 percent from the previous quarter and up 14 percent year-on-year, the Chicago Fed said.

"While District farmland values increased on the whole in the third quarter of 2013, this upward trend was not expected to continue: The respondents' expectations leaned toward a decrease in farmland values in the fourth quarter of 2013, as only 4 percent anticipated an increase and 21 percent forecasted a decrease and 75 percent foresaw stable farmland values," Fed said.

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