Tools for Profit

How to set up an incentive plan

Employers constantly search for ways to attract and keep good employees. One tool to accomplish that goal is an incentive program. FULL STORY »

Use cash reserves wisely

For the most part, 2001 was a profitable year. Milk prices were generally strong, feed was quite affordable, and interest rates dropped substantially over the last half of the year. FULL STORY »

Evaporating equity: The purchased heifer situation

Heifer market prices have increased by about 100 percent in recent years. Although that's good for the dairies selling cattle, it poses some unique financial problems for buyers. FULL STORY »

Lessons learned from an eventful year

Another year is nearing its close, and as we begin to reflect on what has taken place over the last 12 months, we should ask ourselves these questions: Has our way of life changed? Has our industry been affected by the tragedies of last September? Have we prepared ourselves for future bad times? Did we strengthen our financial positions while prices re-mained high much of the past year? FULL STORY »

Compensate family members fairly

Money can always be a source of conflict in a family business. Too often, money problems are created by poor planning and poor communication. Family members need to receive a fair salary, in a timely manner, in return for their services. FULL STORY »

Make the Tax Relief Act of 2001 work for you

By now, you've probably heard about the Tax Relief Act of 2001. Yes, the scope of the new legislation is enormous. FULL STORY »

Negotiate lower prices

The old adage that farmers buy at retail and sell wholesale remains true today. However, with the current downturn in the economy, purchasing opportunities exist. Many companies have excess inventory and will sell at reduced prices. The level of discount you can get is determined by your ability to negotiate. FULL STORY »

Learn from lessons past

Bruce Jones is a professor of agribultural economics and farm management specialist at the University of Wisconsin FULL STORY »

Don't confuse estate taxation with estate planning

Congress has finally passed the long-awaited tax reform package that makes major changes to the U.S. tax code and phases out the estate tax over a period of time. FULL STORY »

Your seat on the roller coaster

When in a roller coaster that's climbing a steep incline, your stomach usually tightens. That's because you know your heart will be in your shoes in just a matter of minutes when the roller coaster drops over the next hill. Yet, when the ride is completed, we often get back in line and ride again. FULL STORY »

Bank financing that promotes growth

In recent years, an explosion of growth has occurred in the dairy industry, with many operations milking 500 or more cows. However, much of this growth has been confined to certain regions of the country. FULL STORY »

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