April 17, 2018
Farm Credit of the Virginias, a customer-owned financial cooperative with a legacy of supporting rural communities and agriculture for over 100 years, announced in early April they are paying more than $30 million in cash to their customer-owners in the form of a patronage dividend.
As a cooperative, Farm Credit distributes a portion of its profits to their customers. Due to excellent earnings for 2017, the Board of Directors has declared its largest ever patronage dividend. The dividend represents 31 percent of the amount of interest paid on loans in 2017 which equates to an interest free loan for four months. Farm Credit customers receive a competitive rate up front, and as an owner of the cooperative, their cost of borrowing is further reduced through these cash dividends.
“We are proud to be one of the few financial institutions that directly rewards its customer-owners for their loyalty and thank them for the business in a very tangible way. The patronage dividend program also helps reduce our customers’ effective cost of borrowing and returns money directly to the communities we serve. Our Board of Directors understand the critical role Farm Credit plays in sustaining our agricultural industry and our rural communities. We are owned by the farmers and agribusinesses that we serve, and paying patronage is an important part of the value we deliver,” remarked Peery Heldreth, CEO of Farm Credit of the Virginias. Since 2001, Farm Credit of the Virginias has paid more than $243 million in patronage dividends to its customer-owners.
Farm Credit of the Virginias provides over $1.8 billion dollars in financing to more than 10,000 farmers, agribusinesses and rural homeowners throughout Virginia, West Virginia and western Maryland. Farm Credit is a cooperative capitalized largely through investments made by farmers, ranchers and the rural homeowners and businesses that borrow from them. In Fact, as part of a nationwide network they are the largest single provider of agricultural credit in the United States and have been for 100 years. Farm Credit helps maintain and improve the quality of life in rural America and on the farm through its constant commitment to competitive lending, expert financial services and for facilitating and sharing knowledge and resources through the Farm Credit Knowledge Center. For more information, visit www.FarmCreditKnowledgeCenter.com or www.FarmCreditofVirginias.com.
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