Sentiment among farmers dipped again in March, according to a new report from Purdue University. The Purdue/CME Group Ag Economy Barometer Principal Investigator James Mintert says the decrease is a sign of less optimism about the industry.
The barometer is now at 124, falling 10 points from the previous month.
Mintert, who is also the director of the Purdue University Center for Commercial Agriculture, says the barometer has been moderating in recent months after hitting a record high in January. The barometer includes two sub indices, the Index of Current Conditions, which increased from 105 to 120 last month, and the Index of Future Expectations, which dropped from 148 to 126.
"While sentiment has settled lower, it’s important to note that it is still higher than during all but the last two months of 2016," said Mintert. "At 120 in March, the Index of Current Conditions exceeded recent highs and is at a level that we haven’t seen since late 2015. Producers’ reduced optimism about future economic conditions in agriculture are what drove this month’s barometer lower."
The barometer is based on a monthly survey of 400 ag producers from throughout the country. You can view the full report by clicking here.