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How strong is the “natural hedge”? The effects of crop acreage and aggregation levels

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  • Finger, Robert

Abstract

The level of natural hedge, i.e. the (negative) correlation between price and yield levels, is an important determinant for farmers’ income risks and their demand for risk management instruments. The natural hedge is often approximated with correlations observed at more aggregated levels, e.g. the county level. This induces biases because the natural hedge at the farm-level is smaller than on more aggregated levels. In this paper, we put this idea one step forward and investigate the empirical relationship between price-yield correlations and the underlying crop acreage, using farm-level data for 5 crops in Switzerland. We find that, for instance, a 1% increase in area under maize and intensive barley leads to a change in the correlation by -0.02 and -0.08, respectively. Thus, larger farms have a stronger natural hedge. Using a revenue insurance example, we show that this information can be used to adjust insurance premiums for each farm.

Suggested Citation

  • Finger, Robert, 2012. "How strong is the “natural hedge”? The effects of crop acreage and aggregation levels," 123rd Seminar, February 23-24, 2012, Dublin, Ireland 122538, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:eaa123:122538
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    File URL: http://purl.umn.edu/122538
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Finger, Robert, 2010. "Evidence of slowing yield growth - The example of Swiss cereal yields," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(2), pages 175-182, April.
    2. 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.
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    4. Conradt, Sarah & Bokusheva, Raushan & Finger, Robert & Kussaiynov, Talgat, 2012. "Yield trend estimation in the presence of non-constant technological change and weather effects," 123rd Seminar, February 23-24, 2012, Dublin, Ireland 122541, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    5. Anton, Jesus & Kimura, Shingo, 2009. "Farm Level Analysis of Risk, and Risk Management Strategies and Policies: Evidence from German Crop Farms," 2009 Conference, August 16-22, 2009, Beijing, China 51729, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
    6. Skees, Jerry R. & Harwood, Joy & Somwaru, Agapi & Perry, Janet, 1998. "The Potential for Revenue Insurance Policies in the South," Journal of Agricultural and Applied Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 30(01), pages 47-61, July.
    7. Ronald I. McKinnon, 1967. "Futures Markets, Buffer Stocks, and Income Stability for Primary Producers," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 75, pages 844-844.
    8. Finger, Robert & Hediger, Werner, 2007. "The Application of Robust Regression to a Production Function Comparison – the Example of Swiss Corn," MPRA Paper 4740, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    9. Price, T. Jeffrey & Wetzstein, Michael E., 1999. "Irreversible Investment Decisions In Perennial Crops With Yield And Price Uncertainty," Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Western Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 24(01), July.
    10. Skees, Jerry R. & Harwood, Joy L. & Somwaru, Agapi & Perry, Janet E., 1998. "The Potential For Revenue Insurance Policies In The South," Journal of Agricultural and Applied Economics, Southern Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 30(01), July.
    11. Hanson, Steven D. & Myers, Robert J. & Hilker, James H., 1999. "Hedging With Futures And Options Under A Truncated Cash Price Distribution," Journal of Agricultural and Applied Economics, Southern Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 31(03), December.
    12. Dismukes, Robert & Coble, Keith H., 2007. "Managing Risk With Revenue Insurance," Amber Waves, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service, May.
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    14. Finger, Robert & El Benni, Nadja, 2011. "Farmers’ Adoption of Extensive Wheat Production - Determinants and Implications," 122nd Seminar, February 17-18, 2011, Ancona, Italy 98979, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    15. Artavia, Marco & Deppermann, Andre & Filler, Gunther & Grethe, Harald & Haeger, Astrid & Kirschke, Dieter & Odening, Martin, 2010. "Ertrags- Und Preisinstabilität Auf Agrarmärkten In Deutschland Und Der Eu," 50st Annual Conference, Braunschweig, Germany, September 29-October 1, 2010 93956, German Association of Agricultural Economists (GEWISOLA).
    16. Finger, Robert, 2012. "Nitrogen use and the effects of nitrogen taxation under consideration of production and price risks," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 107(C), pages 13-20.
    17. Meuwissen, Miranda P.M. & Van Asseldonk, Marcel A.P.M. & Pietola, Kyosti & Hardaker, J. Brian & Huirne, Ruud B.M., 2011. "Income insurance as a risk management tool after 2013 CAP reforms?," 2011 International Congress, August 30-September 2, 2011, Zurich, Switzerland 114649, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    18. Olivier Mahul, 2003. "Hedging price risk in the presence of crop yield and revenue insurance," European Review of Agricultural Economics, Foundation for the European Review of Agricultural Economics, vol. 30(2), pages 217-239, June.
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    21. Coble, Keith H. & Dismukes, Robert & Thomas, Sarah E., 2007. "Policy Implications of Crop Yield and Revenue Variability at Differing Levels of Disaggregation," 2007 Annual Meeting, July 29-August 1, 2007, Portland, Oregon TN 9759, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
    22. El Benni, Nadja & Finger, Robert & Mann, Stefan, 2012. "The effect of agricultural policy change on income risk in Swiss agriculture," 123rd Seminar, February 23-24, 2012, Dublin, Ireland 122532, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    23. Daniele Simone Torriani & Pierluigi Calanca & Martin Beniston & Jürg Fuhrer, 2008. "Hedging with weather derivatives to cope with climate variability and change in grain maize production," Agricultural Finance Review, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 68(1), pages 67-81, May.
    24. Hanson, Steven D. & Myers, Robert J. & Hilker, James H., 1999. "Hedging with Futures and Options under a Truncated Cash Price Distribution," Journal of Agricultural and Applied Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 31(03), pages 449-459, December.
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    Cited by:

    1. Lehmann, Niklaus & Finger, Robert, 2012. "Optimizing whole-farm management considering price and climate risks," 123rd Seminar, February 23-24, 2012, Dublin, Ireland 122533, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    2. Briner, Simon & Finger, Robert, 2012. "Bio-economic modelling of decisions under yield and price risk for suckler cow farms," 123rd Seminar, February 23-24, 2012, Dublin, Ireland 122547, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    3. El Benni, Nadja & Finger, Robert, 2014. "Where is the risk? Price, yield and cost risk in Swiss crop production," Revue d'Etudes en Agriculture et Environnement, Editions NecPlus, vol. 95(03), pages 299-326, September.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    price-yield correlation; aggregation bias; crop insurance; Risk and Uncertainty; Q1; G2;

    JEL classification:

    • Q1 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture
    • G2 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services

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