Title

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

Campus Units

Economics, Center for Agricultural and Rural Development

Document Type

Article

Publication Version

Submitted Manuscript

Publication Date

10-21-2010

Journal or Book Title

American Journal of Agricultural Economics

Volume

92

Issue

5

First Page or Article ID Number

1310

Last Page

1323

DOI

10.1093/ajae/aaq074

Abstract

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.

Comments

This working paper was published as Yu, Tian and Bruce A. Babcock, "Are U.S. Corn and Soybeans Becoming More Drought Tolerant?," American Journal of Agricultural Economics 92 (2010): 1310–1323, doi:10.1093/ajae/aaq074.