December 23, 2012 — Although 2012 average net cash income (NCI) for all farm businesses is expected to stay near its 2011 level, many farm businesses are expected to experience large changes. Farm businesses that specialize in mixed grains; wheat; and soybeans and peanuts are expected to experience a 24-28% increase in average NCI due to strong grain prices and insurance indemnities. Beef cattle farm businesses are forecast to experience a 12% increase in average NCI, while declining hog and milk prices and increasing feed expenses are contributing to an expected 16% decline in average NCI for hog farm businesses and an almost 51% decline for dairy farm businesses. Farm businesses are defined as operations with sales of over $250,000 or smaller operations where farming is reported as the operator's primary occupation; collectively, they represent 42% of all U.S. farm operations.
This chart is based on data found in the November 27, 2012 update of the Farm Sector Income & Finances topic page on the ERS website.