Farm Finance

Archive Report

Spring Credit Crunch

Planting Time Yields Stress, Foreclosures

Oklahoma wheat farmer Ron Voth mocks the bankers, bureaucrats and politicians presiding over the worst farm credit crunch since the Depression: “The people in high-backed swivel chairs call it a necessary time of adjustment for over-investment.”1 Voth, president of the Oklahoma Wheat Growers Association, calls it a disaster. As spring planting advances northward across the nation's agricultural heartland, he and many other farmers expect a bitter harvest of failure and foreclosures.

Agricultural economists predict that 5 to 10 percent of the Midwestern farmers won't get the credit necessary to seed a new crop. The Farmers Home Administration (FmHA), lender to those rejected elsewhere, sent out 65,000 delinquency notices in February, marking the end of a two-year, court-imposed moratorium on ...

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