Customers of Capital Farm Credit, the state’s largest cooperative rural lender, received patronage dividend checks totaling $29.4 million recently. The payment was a continuation of the co-op’s patronage program, which has returned more than $265 million to customers since 1997.
The $29.4 million cash patronage dividend — Capital Farm Credit’s largest cash distribution made to date — was based on the co-op’s 2008 earnings. In addition, another $67.8 million of the co-op’s 2008 earnings was allocated to customer-stockholders for potential distribution in the future, bringing the 2008 total patronage to $97.2 million.
During 2008, Capital Farm Credit merged with another Farm Credit association and grew its loan portfolio to $5.3 billion, ranking it among the top five Farm Credit cooperatives in the United States. Net earnings totaled $98.5 million in 2008.
“It would be hard to imagine a year with as many changes in our country’s agricultural and financial landscapes as 2008, so we are pleased that we continued to perform well. Our credit quality shown some deterioration but remains sound, and our capital levels are strong,” said Ben Novosad, Capital Farm Credit chief executive officer. “Even more importantly, our board of directors reinforced our commitment to share earnings with our member-customers.”
Headquartered in Bryan, Capital Farm Credit is a full-service lender that has more than 70 credit office locations throughout a 192-county territory in Texas. It is part of the Farm Credit System, the nation’s oldest and largest source of loans for agriculture, agribusiness, rural real estate and country homes.