The value of agricultural land has been increasing rapidly, and regulators are concerned that farmland might be drifting toward its version of a housing-market collapse. With more than 1,500 financial institutions specializing in agricultural lending, a farmland bust would be a big setback for the economy, according to The Economist. Examiners at the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. are telling banks to base lending on projected cash flow, rather than the collateral value of farmers' land.

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