Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Misc: Empire Manufacturing survey improves, Farmland Prices "surge"

by Bill McBride on 11/15/2011 01:15:00 PM

From the NY Fed earlier today: Conditions for New York manufacturers held steady in November

The Empire State Manufacturing Survey indicates that conditions for New York manufacturers held steady in November. After a string of five consecutive months of negative readings, the general business conditions index rose nine points, to 0.6. While the new orders index edged down to -2.1, indicating that orders were a little lower, the shipments index rose to 9.4, indicating an increase in shipments. The inventories index fell to -12.2 — a sign that inventory levels dropped.
Employment indexes were mixed: employment levels were slightly lower and the average workweek slightly longer.
This was slightly above the consensus forecast. The futures indexes really "surged" indicating
"a widespread expectation that conditions would improve in the months ahead".

And from the Chicago Fed: Third Quarter Midwest Farmland Values Surge
At 25 percent, the year-over-year gain in agricultural land values in the third quarter of 2011 for the Seventh Federal Reserve District was the largest in just over three decades. Moreover, at 7 percent, the quarterly increase in the value of “good” farmland matched the highest since the late 1970s.
I just hope farmers and farm land lenders remember the lessons of the '80s - and that farmers don't borrow too much, and lenders think about tighter lending standards.