Interest Rates Don’t Slow Farm Loans

If interest rates haven’t been giving you the heebie-jeebies already, the Fed has indicated it will raise those rates again before the end of the year. However, Wisconsin Bankers Association Ag Lending Chair Craig Rogan says rates will likely start to soften following the hike.

Rogan, who is a vice president of ag lending at Nicolet National Bank out of central Wisconsin, says despite high interest rates his farm clients continue moving forward with expansions and improvements. As long as a dairy farm’s processor can handle more milk, dairies are looking at expanding. Rogan has also had clients invest in robotics to ease labor strains.

He tells Mid-West Farm Report that there hasn’t been a slow down in land movement either:

Second-quarter 2023 data from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation show that Wisconsin banks remain on a solid foundation. Lending increased in all categories: commercial, residential and farm.

Deposits also increased slightly as consumers and businesses remained confident in Wisconsin banks as a safe place to keep their money, according to WBA. Net interest margin remains strong at 3.24 percent, and capital levels are healthy.

Farm loans increased both year over year (8.5 percent) and quarter over quarter (26.2 percent).

“In the second quarter of 2023, Wisconsin banks showed continued strength and profitability,” says WBA President and CEO Rose Oswald Poels. “Deposits have held steady, and delinquencies remain low. While inflation, interest rates, and geopolitical issues remain concerns for the remainder of 2023, banks are prepared for future risks and are poised to support their communities through possible economic challenges.”