The Purdue University Ag Economy Barometer for February dipped compared the January reading. Organizers of the index say the overall producer sentiment reading dipped to 134 compared to 153 a month earlier, 19 points below the record high recorded in January.
Despite the drop, the February reading is the second-highest for the index. A reading greater than 100 indicates positive sentiment by producers regarding the ag economy, a reading under 100 suggests the opposite. The two component indices of the Ag Economy Barometer, the Index of Current Conditions and the Index of Future Expectations, also backed off from their January levels. The Index of Current Conditions was 105 in February, down from 118 in January, and the Index of Future Expectations dropped 21 points from its record level of 169, set just a month earlier. The Index of Current Conditions suggests producers feel conditions this winter are only slightly better than during the barometer’s base period of October 2015 to March 2016, when the Index averaged 100. In contrast, producers are substantially more optimistic about future economic conditions than during the fall and winter of 2015-2016, as evidenced by the Index of Future Expectations remaining 48 points higher than during the base period.
From the National Association of Farm Broadcasters.