Home > Rabobank Rural Confidence Survey - Summer rain and strong commodity prices drive farmer confidence to three-year high

Rabobank Rural Confidence Survey - Summer rain and strong commodity prices drive farmer confidence to three-year high

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article image Peter Knoblanche comments on the Rabobank Rural Confidence Survey

According to the latest quarterly Rabobank Rural Confidence Survey, Australian rural confidence has improved to a three-year high as promising summer rainfall and favourable commodity prices have fuelled farmer optimism.

The rise comes despite major flooding in several regions earlier in the year and is the fifth consecutive quarter that positive sentiment has been recorded in the rural sector.

The Rabobank Rural Confidence Survey is a comprehensive monitor of outlook and sentiment in Australian rural industries. Approximately 1200 farmers across a wide range of commodities and geographical areas throughout Australia are questioned on a quarterly basis.

The latest survey, taken last month, found 48 % of farmers expected conditions to improve in the coming year, up from 42 % in the previous quarter. Only 14 % of farmers expect the agricultural economy to worsen, compared to 19 % last quarter.

Despite the improvement, and an upbeat outlook, Rabobank general manager Rural Australia Peter Knoblanche noted that several areas of the nation were still recovering from flood and cyclone damage and that it would be some time before this was complete.

“As well as being devastating for the communities worst hit, the floods and extreme weather events in Queensland, Victoria, WA and parts of New South Wales have been a set-back for some producers due to the impact on yields, crop losses and harvest delays,” he said.

“However the majority of the farming sector in eastern and southern Australia is in a good position due to the additional rainfall and positive seasonal conditions.”

Knoblanche said the latest survey had seen a general lift in confidence as a result of high summer rainfall, while the majority of commodities were also enjoying strong prices. Sentiment was highest in those commodities with the strongest prices.

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