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Corn+Soybean Digest

Brock Online Notes

Latest House, Senate Farm Bill Offers.

Senate negotiators Thursday said a new compromise farm bill proposal put forward by the House delegation still did not raise crop supports enough and came back with a counter offer.

Overall, there is still a fairly wide gap on the crop loan rates that the two sides are offering. The latest proposals appear to be a step backwards from where earlier in the week when negotiators appeared to have worked out a loan rate deal. The two sides are also still at odds on other major issues such as payment limits, packer ownership of livestock, conservation spending and trade with Cuba.

What House negotiators offered Thursday was a seven-year farm bill with slightly higher crop loan rates than they had previously offered. The new plan would set loan rates at $1.95/bu for corn and $4.98/bu for soybeans, congressional sources told Reuters News Service.

Congressional aides said the new offer also included a wheat loan rate of $2.74/bu, versus the $2.61/bu previously sought by the House.

The Senate farm bill conferees late Thursday came back with a proposal to set the corn loan rate at $2.02, with a soybean loan rate of $5.04 and a wheat loan rate of $2.91.

The new House plan also reportedly included a cap of $360,000 on subsidy payments to farmers. Farmers with more than $2.5 million in annual income would not be eligible for any payments. That offer is down from the previous House offer of a $550,000 limit.

But Senate negotiators held firm on payment levels. They said the House should accept the Senate's proposed $275,000 limit because the full House voted Thursday to instruct their conferees to do so.

Editors note: Richard Brock, Soybean Digest's Marketing Editor, is president of Brock Associates, a farm market advisory firm, and publisher of The Brock Report.

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