Publications

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  • USDA Agricultural Baseline Projections to 2010

    WAOB-011, February 22, 2001

    This report provides long-run (10-year) baseline projections for the agricultural sector through 2010. Projections cover agricultural commodities, agricultural trade, and aggregate indicators of the sector, such as farm income and food prices.

  • Agricultural Policy Reform in the WTO--The Road Ahead

    AER-802, May 15, 2001

    Agricultural trade barriers and producer subsidies inflict real costs, both on the countries that use these policies and on their trade partners. This report quantifies the costs of global agricultural distortions and the potential benefits of their full elimination. The report concludes that eliminating global agricultural policy distortions would result in an annual world welfare gain of $56 billion. The report also analyzes the effects on U.S. and world agriculture if only partial reform is achieved in liberalizing tariffs, tariff-rate quotas (limits on imported goods), domestic support, and export subsidies.

  • Agriculture in Brazil and Argentina: Developments and Prospects for Major Field Crops

    WRS-013, December 28, 2001

    This report identifies key factors underlying the agricultural productivity growth and enhanced international competitiveness of Brazil and Argentina in the past decade. Economic and policy reforms, infrastructure development, and enhanced use of agricultural inputs that drove output growth during the 1990s are discussed. This report also compares Brazilian, Argentine, and U.S. soybean production costs and evaluates the combined impact of production, marketing, and transportation costs on the overall export competitiveness of each country's soybean producers. Finally, the outlook for continued growth in output and exports of key commodities is assessed.

  • China Currency Appreciation Could Boost U.S. Agricultural Exports

    WRS-0703, August 22, 2007

    U.S. exports of soybeans and cotton to China have boomed in recent years, but the undervalued exchange rate for the Chinese yuan keeps prices of most other U.S. food and agricultural products more expensive than Chinese products. On average, Chinese retail food prices are about a fourth of U.S. prices. Land-extensive commodities like soybeans, cotton, corn, and wheat have relatively high prices in China, but soybeans and cotton are the only major crops that China imports in significant quantities. With an undervalued exchange rate China's prices are not high enough to attract imports of grains or most livestock products. Appreciation of the Chinese currency would increase the purchasing power of Chinese consumers on world markets and increase China's demand for imported commodities. However, Chinese policymakers are likely to maintain a cautious approach to currency appreciation, motivated in part by farm income and food security concerns.

  • Global Growth, Macroeconomic Change, and U.S. Agricultural Trade

    ERR-46, September 04, 2007

    Rising incomes in emerging markets are propelling U.S. export growth, while consumer demand for diversified products is a primary driver of import growth.

  • USDA Agricultural Projections to 2017

    OCE-2008-1, February 12, 2008

    This report provides longrun (10-year) projections for the agricultural sector through 2017. Projections cover agricultural commodities, agricultural trade, and aggregate indicators of the sector, such as farm income and food prices.

  • U.S. Agricultural Trade Boosts Overall Economy

    FAU-124, April 18, 2008

    U.S. agricultural trade generates employment, income, and purchasing power in both the farm and nonfarm sectors. Each farm export dollar earned stimulated another $1.65 in business activity in calendar year 2006. The $71.0 billion of agricultural exports in 2006 produced an additional $117.2 billion in economic activity for a total economic output of $188.2 billion. Agricultural exports also generated 841,000 full-time civilian jobs, which include 482,000 jobs in the nonfarm sector. Farmer's purchases of fuel, fertilizer, and other inputs to produce commodities for export spurred economic activity in the manufacturing, trade, and transportation sectors.

  • The 2008/2009 World Economic Crisis: What It Means for U.S. Agriculture

    WRS-09-02, March 30, 2009

    The world economic crisis that began in 2008 has major consequences for U.S. agriculture. The weakening of global demand because of emerging recessions and declining economic growth result in reduced export demand and lower agricultural commodity prices, compared with those in 2008. These, in turn, reduce U.S. farm income and place downward pressures on farm real estate values. So far, the overall impact on U.S. agriculture is not as severe as on the broader U.S. economy because the record-high agricultural exports, prices, and farm income in 2007 and 2008 put U.S. farmers on solid financial ground. Moreover, the debt equity ratios in agriculture tend to be more conservative than those in most other sectors of the economy. There is much uncertainty concerning the depth and extent of the crisis. The outcomes for U.S. agriculture are dependent on whether or not there is a global realignment of exchange rates to correct current macroeconomic imbalances.

  • Factors Behind the Rise in Global Rice Prices in 2008

    RCS-09D01, May 07, 2009

    Global rice prices rose to record highs in the spring of 2008, with trading prices tripling from November 2007 to late April 2008. The price increase was not due to crop failure or a particularly tight global rice supply situation. Instead, trade restrictions by major suppliers, panic buying by several large importers, a weak dollar, and record oil prices were the immediate cause of the rise in rice prices. Because rice is critical to the diet of about half the world's population, the rapid increase in global rice prices in late 2007 and early 2008 had a detrimental impact on those rice consumers' well-being. Although rice prices have dropped more than 40 percent from their April 2008 highs, they remain well above pre-2007 levels.

  • Russia's Growing Agricultural Imports: Causes and Outlook

    WRS-09-04, May 15, 2009

    During the 2000s, Russian agricultural imports have grown considerably, from $7 billion in 2000 to $33 billion in 2008. This import growth has made Russia the second largest agricultural importer among emerging markets, after China. The main reasons for the import rise are macroeconomic-high growth in Russian gross domestic product, which increases consumer income and purchasing power, and real appreciation of the ruble, which makes imports less expensive vis-a-vis domestically produced goods. The economic crisis that hit Russia (and the world) in autumn 2008 makes the outlook for Russia's agricultural imports uncertain in the short term. However, the Russian economy is expected to stabilize within a year or two, at which time agricultural imports should continue to grow, although at a lower rate than in past years.

  • The Transmission of Exchange Rate Changes to Agricultural Prices

    ERR-76, July 15, 2009

    ERS addresses the two main reasons for incomplete transmission of exchange rate changes to a country's domestic agricultural prices: namely, restrictive trade policies and poor market conditions.

  • U.S. Cotton Prices and the World Cotton Market: Forecasting and Structural Change

    ERR-80, September 09, 2009

    This report analyzes recent structural changes in the world cotton industry and develops a statistical model that reflects current drivers of U.S. cotton prices. Legislative changes in 2008 authorized USDA to resume publishing cotton price forecasts for the first time in nearly 80 years. Systematic problems have become apparent in the forecasting models used by USDA and elsewhere, highlighting the need for an updated review of price relationships. A structural break in the U.S. cotton industry occurred in 1999, and world cotton supply has become an important determinant of U.S. cotton prices, along with China's trade and production policy. The model developed here forecasts changes in the U.S. upland cotton farm price based on changes in U.S. cotton supply, the U.S. stocks-to-use ratio (S/U), China's net imports as a share of world consumption, the foreign supply of cotton, and selected farm policy parameters.

  • Growth and Equity Effects of Agricultural Marketing Efficiency Gains in India

    ERR-89, December 17, 2009

    ERS examines the performance of India's agricultural marketing system and analyzes economywide implications of improved marketing efficiency that might stem from future reforms.

  • USDA Agricultural Projections to 2019

    OCE-2010-1, February 11, 2010

    This report provides longrun (10-year) projections for the agricultural sector through 2019. Projections cover agricultural commodities, agricultural trade, and aggregate indicators of the sector, such as farm income and food prices.

  • Effects of Increased Biofuels on the U.S. Economy in 2022

    ERR-102, October 21, 2010

    ERS examines economic effects of increased biofuels in transportation fuels, called for in the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007. Effects are measured by gross domestic product, household income, price of energy fuels, and agricultural output and trade.

  • NAFTA at 17: Full Implementation Leads to Increased Trade and Integration

    WRS-1101, March 31, 2011

    This report is the last in USDA's series of Congressionally mandated biennial reports on the impacts of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) on U.S. agriculture and the rural economy. The report responds to a mandate in the North American Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act of 1993.

  • European Financial Imbalances: Implications of the Eurozone Sovereign Debt Problem for U.S. Agricultural Exports

    WRS-1102, May 12, 2011

    This report discusses Eurozone sovereign debt problems that began in 2010 and their potential consequences for the European Union (EU) and U.S. agriculture.

  • Brazil's Cotton Industry: Economic Reform and Development

    CWS-11D01, June 17, 2011

    This report identifies the factors contributing to the cycles in Brazil's cotton production and exports that have made the country both an important market for U.S. cotton exports and now a competitor with U.S. cotton producers since 1990.

  • USDA Agricultural Projections to 2021

    OCE-121, February 13, 2012

    This report provides longrun (10-year) projections for the agricultural sector through 2021. Projections cover agricultural commodities, agricultural trade, and aggregate indicators of the sector, such as farm income and food prices.

  • The 2008-09 Recession and Recovery Implications for the Growth and Financial Health of U.S. Agriculture

    WRS-1201, May 22, 2012

    U.S. agriculture was better positioned than most U.S. industries entering the recession, was less affected by the recession than most other U.S. industries, and is well positioned to continue to do well in the years ahead.