Chinese Investment in the U.S. Continues to Grow

July 10, 2013 09:32 by Clayton Reeves in Agriculture, Capital Markets, M&A  //  Tags: , , , , ,   //   Comments (0)
Despite political, regulatory, cultural and geographic obstacles to Chinese firms investing in the U.S., they continue to do so at a growing rate. Chinese figures show that their investment in the U.S. grew to $9.3 billion in 2012 from $1.88 billion in 2007. U.S. figures were even more extreme, concluding that the cumulative investment jumped from $3.4 billion to $22.8 billion in the same period.  The recently proposed acquisition of Smithfield Foods by Shuanghui International for $4.7 billion would represent the largest ever acquisition of a U.S. firm by a Chinese entity. Additionally, this acquisition could represent a threat to the U.S. food supply, which has generally been more protected through regulatory issues due to national interests. With many of the food related issues that Chinese firms have faced, either in the pet or human food arena, there is concern from regulators about the acquisition of Smithfield. Regardless of how the Smithfield acquisition turns out, one fact remains: the Chinese are interested in purchasing U.S. companies moving forward and have the dry powder to do so.  It will be interesting to see how this changes the M&A landscape moving forward. Click here to read the article this post references in the China Daily.

Commodities Dashboard - September 21, 2012

September 21, 2012 13:13 by David Patterson in Agriculture, Economy  //  Tags: , , , , ,   //   Comments (0)
The following is the Commodities Dashboard for September 21, 2012.          

Commodities - Energy, Agriculture & Construction

The following charts are CCCA's dashboard for Energy, Agriculture, and Construction commodities.              

Ethanol Mandates Debated as Corn Reaches Record Prices

August 6, 2012 14:23 by Stephanie Siders in Agriculture, Energy, Renewables  //  Tags: ,   //   Comments (0)
The Renewable Fuel Standard mandates that ethanol make up 9 percent of the U.S. gasoline supply in 2012, which would use nearly 40 percent of the nation’s corn production.  In the face of record corn prices due to lower than expected corn production, livestock groups went to the EPA asking that the mandate be curbed or suspended.  Likewise, Cargill CEO Gregory Page publicly pled for changes to the Standard last week. Livestock producers argue that if the mandate is waived, more corn will be available for feed which would keep meat prices down for consumers. 

Severe Drought Impacting Crops & Cattle

August 2, 2012 11:33 by Stephanie Siders in Agriculture  //  Tags: ,   //   Comments (0)
The entire mid-section of the US is experiencing one of the driest hottest summers on record which is severely impacting the nation’s agriculture producers.  What was initially expected to be a bumper corn crop has shriveled up and farmers are now turning to crop insurance to save them from a complete loss. Corn prices are sky-rocketing to record levels.             Cattle ranchers are running out of water and grass, forcing them to sell at a time when the U.S. cattle inventory is at a 50 year low.  One such farmer/rancher is my father, who has been selling cow/calf pairs in recent weeks.  Beef prices have been falling as cattle flood auctions throughout the Midwest, however prices are expected to rebound in 2013 when producers begin to rebuild their herds.            

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