ENFIELD, Conn. — Farm Credit East’s Board of Directors recently approved the distribution of a mid-year patronage dividend of $25 million to more than 11,400 farm, fishing and forestry business owners and operators across Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York and Rhode Island.
This special patronage payment is based on interest earned the past twelve months through June 2019 and equates to approximately .45% of eligible average customer loan volume. This special patronage is expected to be paid in late October 2019 and is separate from the $65 million patronage dividend that was paid in February 2019 based on 2018 earnings.
Board Chair Matt Beaton, of Wareham, Mass., noted, “As a board, our philosophy is that funds not required to operate or capitalize our cooperative should be returned to members. This special dividend reflects Farm Credit East’s strong financial position and earnings through mid-year and we are pleased to be able to approve this patronage payment to our customer owners.”
As owners of their financial cooperative, Farm Credit East’s customers share in the financial success of the cooperative through patronage dividends. Since the patronage program was first adopted, customer-owners of Farm Credit East (and predecessor cooperatives) have earned $818 million in dividends from ownership of their cooperative.
“This mid-year, special patronage dividend is the result of continued strong earnings, strong levels of capital and several items that have put Farm Credit East ahead of its 2019 financial plan,” added Bill Lipinski, Farm Credit East CEO. “Paying patronage dividends, while also maintaining strong capital levels, is a key part of our cooperative’s value proposition. Our strong financial capacity enables us to continue to grow with customers and withstand economic cycles as the leading financial partner to the Northeast agriculture, commercial fishing and forest products industries.”
— Farm Credit East