经济学人:重蹈覆辙 中西部的农业危机有多严重(02)

American farmers again started to farm more land.

美国农民又一次开始大面积耕种。

They also used more yield-boosting technology—as did farmers in other parts of the world.

他们也使用了更多增加产量的科技,就像世界各地的农民所做的一样。

A record 179m productive acres were brought in worldwide since 2006, says Dan Basse at AgResource, a research firm.

来自一家名为AgResource的研究公司的Dan Basse表示,自从2006年起,全世界卖出了创纪录的17.9亿亩的耕地。

Things started to turn sour after a year of record profits in 2013, when the rapidly growing global supply of grains outstripped demand, the appetite for ethanol stagnated and the Chinese economy slowed down.

在2013年利润创下纪录的一年之后,情况开始恶化,当时全球粮食供应急剧增长超过所需,对乙醇需求量大不如前,并且中国经济增长放缓。

American net farm revenue dropped from $120 billion in 2013 to an estimated $62 billion this year.

美国农业净收入从2013年的1200亿美元预计下跌到今年的620亿美元。

But unlike the previous big crisis, the balance-sheets of many farmers are robust.

但是,与之前危及不同的是,许多农民的收支平衡表依然稳健。

Moreover, interest rates are still low and demand remains steady even if it isn't growing much any more.

而且,利率依然很低并且人们对农产品需求依然稳定,即便没有更多的增长。

And although the values for farmland dropped last year for only the second time since the 1980s, these drops were far less dramatic than they were back then: the value of land in Indiana, for instance, fell nearly 60% between 1981 and 1986.

尽管去年农田的价值发生了自八十年来以来的第二次下跌,但下跌幅度比起过去来看是微乎其微的,例如,在印第安纳州的土地在1981年到1986年之间下滑了近乎60%。

“This boom was not as strong and we don't anticipate this crisis to be as severe as in the 1980s,” says Christopher Hurt at Indiana's Purdue University.

印第安纳州普渡大学的Christopher Hurt表示,“这次的农业兴起没有之前的强势,所以我们认为这次危机也不会像80年代那样严重。”

Even so, farmers have reason to be anxious.

即便如此,农民们还是有担心的理由。

The two things that matter most to them, weather and government policy, are unpredictable.

对农民们影响最大的两件事,即天气和政府政策,是不可预计的。

“Monkeying around with trade deals makes us nervous,” says Brent Gloy, who farms in south-western Nebraska.

来自内布拉斯加州西南部的农民Brent Gloy谈到,“和贸易政策斗智斗勇让我们很紧张。”

America exports 20% of its farm production; its top export markets are Canada, China and Mexico.

美国出口20%的农产品,其主要出口国包括加拿大、中国和墨西哥。

Populist politics were born in a Midwestern farm-crash at the end of the 19th century.

民粹主义政治诞生于第十九世纪末中西部的一场农业危机中。

That 21st-century populism should come along at the same time as an agricultural slump is further proof of what Mark Twain knew: history rhymes.

第二十一世纪的民粹主义应该同时出现,因为农业的萧条进一步证明了Mark Twain所推崇的:历史规律。

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