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Farmland auction: Illinois acreage sells for $7.8 million

COLUMBIA CITY, Ind. (March 22, 2012) -- Approximately 1,337 acres of Illinois farmland sold at auction for $7.8 million Wednesday as a strong crowd of bidders gathered at Erie High School for the sale, managed by Schrader Real Estate & Auction Company.

The auction produced a spirited competition that was finally resolved with three bidders purchasing the land.

"There is a lot of pent-up demand for farms of 1,000 acres or more, but there haven't been a lot of larger farms on the market. So this property attracted more interest from investment groups, one of which was the high bidder on the majority of the land," said R.D. Schrader, president of the auction company. "We had great participation from local farmers and local investors as well, which is the ideal situation. In this case, two of the buyers were local -- an investor and an operator."

Schrader added that the auction included land that varied widely in productivity, resulting in a wide range of prices per acre. "On the most productive tracts, bids were over $7,000 per acre, with an average of $6,269 per acre on the 921 acres that made up the largest group of tracts sold. Across the board, these reflected the strong gains we've seen on comparable land over the last couple of years," he said.

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