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Futures for farmers: Hedging participation and the Mexican corn scheme

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  • G. Benavides
  • P. N. Snowden

Abstract

Administered commodity price schemes in developing countries have proved ineffective in raising farmers' incomes, and price stabilisation through futures markets is increasingly advocated as the alternative policy objective. A potential difficulty is that farmers tend not to hedge extensively, even in developed countries where access to futures markets is long established. Explanations for this reluctance are examined here with context provided by the Mexican hedging programme, which incorporates financial incentives to spur adoption. Applying representative data for corn to a well-known analysis of the hedging decision suggests that limited participation may reflect rational calculation rather than farmer 'inertia'. A policy implication is that permanent access subsidies are difficult to justify from the national perspective.

Suggested Citation

  • G. Benavides & P. N. Snowden, 2006. "Futures for farmers: Hedging participation and the Mexican corn scheme," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 42(4), pages 698-712.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:jdevst:v:42:y:2006:i:4:p:698-712
    DOI: 10.1080/00220380600682330
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Harwood, Joy L. & Heifner, Richard G. & Coble, Keith H. & Perry, Janet E. & Somwaru, Agapi, 1999. "Managing Risk in Farming: Concepts, Research, and Analysis," Agricultural Economics Reports 34081, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.
    2. Sadoulet, Elisabeth & Janvry, Alain de & Davis, Benjamin, 2001. "Cash Transfer Programs with Income Multipliers: PROCAMPO in Mexico," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 29(6), pages 1043-1056, June.
    3. Anderson, Ronald W & Danthine, Jean-Pierre, 1981. "Cross Hedging," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(6), pages 1182-1196, December.
    4. Kletzer, Ken & Newbery, David M & Wright, Brian D, 1992. "Smoothing Primary Exporters' Price Risks: Bonds, Futures, Options and Insurance," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 44(4), pages 641-671, October.
    5. Rigoberto A. Lopez & Hugo H. Ramos, 1998. "Supply response and demand for basic grains in El Salvador," Agribusiness, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 14(6), pages 475-481.
    6. Larson, Donald F. & Varangis, Panos & Yabuki, Nanae, 1998. "Commodity risk management and development," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1963, The World Bank.
    7. Anderson, Ronald W & Danthine, Jean-Pierre, 1980. " Hedging and Joint Production: Theory and Illustrations," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 35(2), pages 487-498, May.
    8. Alicia N. Rambaldi & Phil Simmons, 2000. "Response to price and production risk: The case of Australian wheat," Journal of Futures Markets, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 20(4), pages 345-359, April.
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    Cited by:

    1. Guillermo Benavides, 2010. "Forecasting Short-Run Inflation Volatility using Futures Prices: An Empirical Analysis from a Value at Risk Perspective," Working Papers 2010-12, Banco de México.
    2. Guillermo Benavides, 2010. "Forecasting Short-Run Inflation Volatility using Futures Prices: An Empirical Analysis from a Value at Risk Perspective," Revista de Administración, Finanzas y Economía (Journal of Management, Finance and Economics), Tecnológico de Monterrey, Campus Ciudad de México, vol. 4(2), pages 1-27.
    3. Wyn Morgan & Nicholas Snowden, 2007. "Comparative Advantage and the Gains from Financial Trade: A Reappraisal," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 30(2), pages 342-362, February.

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