Water Week

EWN Publishing

WA: Rainfall around much of the state’s agricultural area in July improves rural confidence; farmers optimistic of higher incomes after a dull year

Posted by waterweek on 21 September 2007

Rural confidence had improved slightly in WA, following rainfall around much of the state’s agricultural area in July and strong commodity prices positively impacting farmers’ confidence levels with improvement in wheat prices and relatively strong wool prices, reported Farm Weekly, (30/08/2007, p.23).

Seasonal conditions worry farmers: Of the farmers in WA expecting the agricultural economy to decline over the next 12 months, 65 per cent gave seasonal conditions as a major reason, whilst increasing input prices were also “top of mind”, cited by 24 per cent of respondents.

Though optimistic about income growth: Consistent with the improvement in headline confidence, WA farmer income expectations were also stronger in the latest survey period. Overall, 44 per cent of respondents expected their gross farm income to improve in the next 12 months, up from last quarter when 41 per cent anticipated higher incomes.

After a ‘bad’ year: The improvement in income expectations came after a poor year for farm incomes in the 2006/07 financial year. A total of 63 per cent of WA farmers surveyed said they had lower gross farm incomes in the 2006/07 financial year than in the previous year. Only 15 per cent reported higher incomes in this period.

Farm Weekly, 30/8/2007, p. 23

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