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Fed: Winters storms affected farmers in the Midwest

Friday, January 15, 2010

Snowy weather in the Midwest has made things more difficult for farmers.
Snowy weather in the Midwest has made things more difficult for farmers.

A recent report from the Federal Reserve Board noted that weather played a factor for those in the business of using farm equipment.

The Fed's latest edition of the Beige Book said that cold weather stressed both livestock and crops around the time of the new year. For example, the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta reported that cold weather in its region damaged citrus crops.

Furthermore, the banks in Chicago and Minneapolis indicated that winter storms stopped harvesting equipment from collecting corn. The weather also got in the way of tilling and the application of fertilizer.

"Corn and soybean crop yields before the onset of cold weather and storms were described as above average in the Chicago and Kansas City Districts," the report from the Fed said.

The report from the banks comes after the U.S. Department of Agriculture's annual crop production data was released, which shows that both corn and soybean production hit record levels in 2009.

As far as prices go, the banks in Chicago and Kansas City reported that grain and soybeans increased. However, the Fed described prices overall as "mixed."

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