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Do Farmers Hedge Optimally or by Habit? A Bayesian Partial-Adjustment Model of Farmer Hedging

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  • Dorfman, Jeffrey H.
  • Karali, Berna

Abstract

Hedging is one of the most important risk management decisions that farmers make and has a potentially large role in the level of profit eventually earned from farming. Using panel data from a survey of Georgia farmers that recorded their hedging decisions for four years on three crops we examine the role of habit, demographics, farm characteristics, and information sources on the hedging decisions made by 106 different farmers. We find that the role of habit varies widely. Information sources are shown to have significant and large effects on the chosen hedge ratios. The farmer's education level, attitude toward technology adoption, farm profitability, and the ratio of acres owned to acres farmed also play important roles in hedging decisions.

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Paper provided by NCCC-134 Conference on Applied Commodity Price Analysis, Forecasting, and Market Risk Management in its series 2008 Conference, April 21-22, 2008, St. Louis, Missouri with number 37596.

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Date of creation: 2008
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Handle: RePEc:ags:nccest:37596

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Keywords: Bayesian econometrics; hedging decisions; habit formation; information sources; Agricultural Finance;

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  1. Koop, Gary M & Tobias, Justin, 2006. "Semiparametric Bayesian Inference in Smooth Coefficient Models," Staff General Research Papers 12202, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  2. Pennings, Joost M. E. & Garcia, Philip, 2004. "Hedging behavior in small and medium-sized enterprises: The role of unobserved heterogeneity," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 28(5), pages 951-978, May.
  3. Holt, Matthew T & Goodwin, Barry K, 1997. "Generalized Habit Formation in an Inverse Almost Ideal Demand System: An Application to Meat Expenditures in the U.S," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 22(2), pages 293-320.
  4. Joost M.E. Pennings & Raymond M. Leuthold, 2000. "The Role of Farmers' Behavioral Attitudes and Heterogeneity in Futures Contracts Usage," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 82(4), pages 908-919.
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