Journal Article

Are U.S. Corn and Soybeans Becoming More Drought Tolerant?

Tian Yu and Bruce A. Babcock

in American Journal of Agricultural Economics

Published on behalf of Agricultural and Applied Economics Association

Volume 92, issue 5, pages 1310-1323
Published in print October 2010 | ISSN: 0002-9092
Published online October 2010 | e-ISSN: 1467-8276 | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ajae/aaq074
Are U.S. Corn and Soybeans Becoming More Drought Tolerant?

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The hypothesis that corn and soybeans have become more drought tolerant is tested by regressing county yields on a drought index and time. Results indicate that corn yield losses from drought of a given severity, whether measured in quantity terms or as a percentage of mean yields, have decreased over time. Soybean percentage yield losses have also declined, but absolute losses have remained largely constant. The potential impact of increased drought tolerance on U.S. crop insurance rates is illustrated by comparing Group Risk Plan premium rates assuming time-invariant susceptibility to drought with rates generated from this article’s regression results.

Keywords: corn; crop insurance rates; drought tolerance; soybean; yield risk; G22; Q10; Q18

Journal Article.  7739 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Agricultural Economics ; Insurance

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