Farm sales very low in February, dairy down 88% from last year

Farm sales very low in February, dairy down 88% from last year
There were only 75 farm sales in New Zealand in February, up marginally from the record low of 73 in January, figures released by the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand show. Total February sales were 63% below the average February figure for the past four years. Dairy farm sales fell to seven over the month, an 88% fall from the 57 sales in February 2008. Grazing farm sales fell to 33 from 118 a year ago. The REINZ reports farm sales over a three month period. At interest.co.nz we calculate the number of sales in each separate month. "The New Zealand total of 276 sales for this period (three months to February 2009) is down from 305 sales in the corresponding three months to January 2009. But in the three months to February 2008, 713 rural properties changed hands," REINZ rural spokesman Murray Cleland said. The median farm sale price for the three month period was NZ$1,262,500. "While this is well down on the median price of NZ$1,750,000 the market saw in the three months to February 2008, this needs to be seen in the context of the massive dairy payout of that season," Cleland said. He said indications such as the more positive results in the latest round of Fonterra auctions, with prices up 16%, point to the likelihood that prices would settle at the 2007 level.

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