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December 20, 2013

Category: Business Trends

Ottumwa Trends

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The average cost of homes sold in December reached over $151,000, which is the highest monthly average that we have seen for the past year. In 2009, the highest average price was in June at $127,768. For reference purposes, the lowest average price in 2009 was recorded in March at $47,476 while the lowest average seen in 2010 was $65,994 reported in November. The average home sale price in 2009 was $84,961 and in 2010, the average home sale price was $106, 199.The number of homes sold in 2010 remained comparable with homes sold in 2009 with 280 and 285, respectively.

In the agricultural sector, com prices continue to increase, a trend which has continued for well over a year. Soybean prices also saw an increase in December, and have increased 30% over the average spot price in December 2009. When Trends reports soybean prices, the figure is derived from taking the average spot price paid for beans at Tri-County Grain for a given month. This does not include any soybeans that were sold under contract.
The average hog price showed a slight increase in December over the previous month, and is holding steady with the average price reported a year ago. As for hog prices, we work through the USDA Ag Reporting Service. The number we show is the average price for negotiated (carcass basis) prices per 100 pounds. Ag Reporting takes the number of hogs sold on each day of the month, the weighted average price times the number sold that day. At the end of the month, the total dollars paid is then divided by the total animals sold. We take the average for the two reporting regions called Iowa/Minnesota and Western Corn belt.

The unemployment situation in Ottumwa and Wapello County continues to improve. Ottumwa's unemployment rate for December went down by .8% since November and Wapello County decreased by .4%. The national unemployment rate dropped another .2%, a trend that we have seen over the past few months. The figures should continue to improve over the next year as construction is completed on the Ottumwa Job Corps. The facility should be opening mid-2011.?

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"After attending Iowa State University, I left Iowa for other cities around the country. I came back to Southeastern Iowa because I haven't found a better place to raise my children."

Chris Ball, Entrepreneur and Business Owner