For well-managed operations, money is just another commodity that’s needed to operate – it is no different than any other input.

This is becoming a bigger issue for most of your operations. You probably used to get your financing from one source: most likely the local bank. Now, with new technologies, many of you can run your seed and chemical purchases on deferred payment programs, use internet banking and, in some cases, work with banks hundreds of miles away from your operation.

Your operation can use these changes to help you manage risk in the rapidly changing environment of farming in the 21st century.

We have seen four rate drops by the Fed since January 1. If your operating note is on a variable rate, it should be dropping. If it is not, talk to your lender. If he will not drop the rate, talk to another lender. Lenders are in fierce competition to finance good operations, so use that as a competitive advantage.

You can e-mail Moe at

mrussell@netins.net

Editors’ note: Moe Russell, Soybean Digest Risk Management Editor, is president of Russell Consulting Group, a farm management agency in Panora, IA.

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