In-House Research Leads to Investment Success

Research plays a crucial role in all phases of our investment process from acquisitions to property management to dispositions. Our research publications are used to educate potential investors, while keeping our current clients informed of topics relevant to their portfolio.

All of our in-house research publications are accessible to the public.


April 1, Farmland Flash Report: Potential Impacts of COVID-19 on Major U.S. Agricultural Markets

COVID-19 containment efforts are interrupting consumption and supply patterns across the world, with agriculture markets, production and shipments also feeling the impacts of the pandemic. Commodity markets have been characterized by significantly higher volatility, mirroring trends in financial markets, and have been driven by investors and traders seeking increased liquidity. Among commodities, prices for energy and mineral commodities have experienced more dramatic declines than agricultural commodities.


March 2020, Natural Resource Flash Report, Timberland-Farmland: Resilience under Uncertainty

As COVID-19 spreads beyond the borders of China and surges in documented cases of infection were reported in Iran, Korea, Japan, Italy, the U.S. and numerous other countries, financial markets reacted dramatically. In the last week of February 2020, the U.S. stock markets suffered the largest weekly losses since the Global Financial Crisis in 2008, with the S&P 500 falling nearly 12%.


March 10, 2020, Farmland Flash Report: COVID-19 Potential Impacts to Global Agricultural Markets

The dramatic spread of the COVID-19 virus in China and the more recent appearance of COVID-19 cases and fatalities in an increasing number of countries has sparked major corrections in global commodity and financial markets.


March 2020, Hancock Farmland Investor: U.S. Farmland Returns Retreat in 2019 as Appreciation Returns Slow

U.S. farmland returns for 2019 as reported by NCREIF dropped 193 basis points (bps) from the previous year, slipping to 4.8%. Last year’s U.S. farmland performance reached the lowest annual level of total returns since 2001 (when NCREIF Farmland Index returns were 2.0%), and was 632 bps below the 10-year average of 11.1%.


January 2020, Farmland Flash Report: U.S. and China Reach Phase One Trade Deal, Boosting Prospects for U.S. Farm Sector

On January 15, 2020, the U.S. and China signed a phase one trade deal that featured a commitment by China to purchase U.S. farm products in 2020 and 2021 totaling $80 billion, compared to a baseline 2017 amount of $24 billion, an incremental increase of $12.5 billion in 2020 and $19.5 billion in 2021 ($32 billion total).


January 2020, Farmland Investor: U.S. Farm Economy

The well-being of the U.S. farm sector received a mixed review in the November 2019 USDA Farm Income and Wealth Statistics report, which estimated that 2019 net income for farms rose 10% over 2018’s, reflecting close to flat cash receipts, stable costs and greater government support. This last factor was the single largest contributor to gains in 2019 net farm income, reflecting a 64% year-over-year increase in direct government payments, to $22.4 billion – the highest since 2005.


August 2019, Hancock Farmland Investor: Taking Stock of Farmland Cash Yields: a Comparative Analysis

Institutional investors seek to diversify their multi-asset portfolios by acquiring real assets such as farmland, timberland and commercial real estate. Farmland’s strong cash yield is a significant benefit that could provide stability in today’s environment of market volatility.


Natural Resource Flash Report, August 2019: U.S.‑ China Trade Tensions Escalate

On August 6th 2019, China ordered its state-owned enterprises to suspend all agricultural imports from the U.S., in response to the recently announced 10% tariffs on the remaining $300 billion worth of Chinese goods by the U.S starting in September. Private buyers in China have followed suit, citing uncertainties in the U.S.-China trade talks.


May 2019, Hancock Farmland Investor: Estimated U.S. 2019 Planted Acreage Declines 1.3% y-o-y, Led by Soybeans and Wheat

The March 2019 USDA Prospective Plantings Report predicts that soybean, wheat, cotton and rice acreage will contract this year, with some offset from increased corn acreage. The overall decline in row crop planted acres reflects reduced price expectations for major row crops such as corn, cotton, rice, soybeans and wheat, with soybeans experiencing the biggest acreage decline – 5% – in response to lower soybean prices.


April 2019, Natural Resource Flash Report: Canada and China Clash over Canola Trade

In March 2019, China rescinded the export licenses of the two largest Canadian canola companies, Richardson International and Viterra, to ship canola to China, citing non-compliance with plant health requirements. These two companies own four of the fourteen major canola crushing facilities in Canada. China also intensified its inspection measures and standards for canola seed imports from Canada, and intends to import far less product from Canada, according to Chinese Agriculture Ministry officials.

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