Volatile Prices and Profi t Margins

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2019-04-01
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Hart, Chad
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Schulz, Lee
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Center for Agricultural and Rural Development

The Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) conducts innovative public policy and economic research on agricultural, environmental, and food issues. CARD uniquely combines academic excellence with engagement and anticipatory thinking to inform and benefit society.

CARD researchers develop and apply economic theory, quantitative methods, and interdisciplinary approaches to create relevant knowledge. Communication efforts target state and federal policymakers; the research community; agricultural, food, and environmental groups; individual decision-makers; and international audiences.

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THE CALENDAR year 2019 has been interesting for agricultural markets. We began the year with record supplies for all of Iowa’s major commodities. However, trade disputes have cast a cloud over growth in crop and livestock usage and weather events and foreign disease outbreaks have sparked quick reversals in commodity prices. Since the first of the year, corn prices have fluctuated by $1.10 per bushel, soybeans by $1.55 per bushel, hogs by $28 per hundredweight, and cattle by $16 per hundredweight. And we’re still only halfway through the year.

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