Federal government seeks options as USDA emergency loan program dries up

The U.S. government’s $2.65 billion operating loan program to help farmers keep their businesses going has already run out of cash, officials said Monday.

As a result, the U.S. Department of Agriculture is looking for other sources of money to bridge the gap “until additional funds are made available, either this year or in the next fiscal year,” the agency said in a statement.

The agency declined to say what other funding it was hoping to leverage for assistance.

USDA Farm Service Agency loan guarantees and direct loans are often considered to be loans of last resort, say banking experts. Without the financial support, some farmers may struggle to survive until the next cash injection in the fall, say rural economy experts.

Read more: St. Louis Post-Dispatch

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