- Overall index rose to its second highest reading since before COVID-19.
- Bankers biggest economic concerns for 2021 are excessive inflation and higher long-term interest rates.
- For the first time since 2013, Creighton’s survey has recorded four straight months of above growth-neutral farmland prices.
- Farm equipment-sales index rose to its highest reading since April 2013.
- Approximately 44% of bank CEOs expect low loan demand to be the greatest issue facing their banks for 2021, up from 7% last year at this time.
- Only 4% of bankers indicated that rising loan defaults and bankruptcies represented their greatest concern for 2021, down significantly from the 32% in 2020 survey.
Overall: The overall index for January rose to 52.0 from December’s 51.6. The index ranges between 0 and 100 with a reading of 50.0 representing growth neutral.
“Recent sharp improvements in agriculture commodity prices, federal farm support payments, and Federal Reserve’s record low short-term interest rates have underpinned the Rural Mainstreet Economy in a solid and positive growth range. However, the rural economy remains well below pre-pandemic levels,” said Ernie Goss, PhD, Jack A. MacAllister Chair in Regional Economics at Creighton University’s Heider College of Business.