Between Jan. 1, 1937, and Jan. 1, 1939, ownership of farm land in Iowa by corporations increased from 11.2 to 11.9 percent of the farm area of the state. In this same period corporations deeded to individuals 558,000 acres but also acquired 791,000 acres, with a net increase of 233,000 acres. Not all the land in the name of corporations is available for sale, however, since approximately 20 percent of the total has been sold on contract, the title remaining with the corporation until a certain percentage of the purchase price is paid.
Of the 4 million acres of farm land now owned by corporations, insurance companies with 2.7 million acres lead all other corporations in land holdings. Furthermore, the increase in acreage held by insurance companies during the last 2 years equals the net increase of all corporations.
In the 2-year period, 1937-1939, corporate ownership increased in western and southern Iowa but changed only slightly in the remainder of the state, with decreases more common than increases. The additions to corporate holdings in the western and southern areas were caused mainly by the continuation of drouth conditions in parts of these areas.
Murray, William G.
"Corporate land, foreclosures, mortgage debt and land values in Iowa, 1939,"
Research Bulletin (Iowa Agriculture and Home Economics Experiment Station): Vol. 24
, Article 1.
Available at: https://lib.dr.iastate.edu/researchbulletin/vol24/iss266/1