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About FAST

FAST (Farm Analysis Solution Tools) are a suite of Microsoft Excel spreadsheets designed to assist those in agriculture make better decisions via user-friendly computer programs. FAST aids users in performing financial analysis, assessing investment decisions, and evaluating the impacts of various management decisions.

Requirements for FAST Tools Usage

  • Windows based PC
  • Microsoft Office 2007 or newer (some tools may still function with older versions of Office). A full version of Office is required; the Starter versions will not work properly

FAST tools will not work correctly with the Mac version of Microsoft Office.The only way to run the tools on a Mac is if it also has the Windows operating system installed and a version of Microsoft Office for Windows

FAST Macro Security Settings

FAST spreadsheets require minor adjustments to Microsoft Excel's default security levels. Please see the FAST Important Security Settings Information document here for more information.

Subscribe to FAST

FAST spreadsheets can be accessed by either downloading programs from this site (free of charge) or through the online subscription service.

(PLEASE NOTE: the online subscription service is currently down for maintenance).

Complete list of FAST Tools: Click here
Recent FAST Tools Updates

Spreadsheets titles from two latest updates are shown. For more comprehensive lists, see the Full List of Tools above or section lists below.

To Download Spreadsheets: Check the box next to the spreadsheet, then scroll down to the bottom of the page and click "Download."


Download

Tool

Size Date User Guide Demo

2015 Crop Insurance Decision Tool - Fall

26530k 9/2/2014 More

Calculates premiums, evaluates insurance payments, and provides historical data useful when making crop insurance decisions for multiple crops. Updated for wheat Fall 2013. Estimates are for crops in states that are harvested in 2015.

Balance Sheet & Historical Financial Statements

1406k 6/20/2014 More Demo

Prepares financial statements for a farm based on beginning and ending balance sheets and revenue and expense items.

Cash Flow Planning

1448k 6/20/2014 More Demo

Prepares monthly pro-forma cash flows for an operation.

Farm Rent Evaluator

8642k 6/20/2014 More Demo

Compares the risks and returns of different leases.

Grain Farm Budget and Projection Tool

8659k 6/20/2014 More

This program calculates per-acre budgets for different crops and a whole farm budget and includes breakevens. Projected financial statements and return sensitivities are available. The effects of farm level crop insurance and hedging can be analyzed.

Grain Pricing Tool

1206k 6/20/2014 More

Enables the user to: 1) estimate the future distributions of corn and soybean, 2) calculate breakeven prices for storage and compare to projections, and 3) compare net returns of delivering grain to alternative locations and/or months.

Machinery Economics

1197k 6/20/2014 More Demo

Analyzes the cost of completing fieldwork and generates machinery costs.

Planting Decision Model

1323k 6/20/2014 More

With this program, the user can: 1) estimate the costs of planting corn and soybeans by planting date, 2) estimate the net returns from replanting, 3) prevented planting payments, and 4) compare crop rotations.

2014 Crop Insurance Decision Tool - Spring

28210k 3/7/2014 More

Calculates premiums, evaluates insurance payments, and provides historical data useful when making crop insurance decisions for multiple crops. Estimates are for crops in states that are harvested in 2014.


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): Click here
The FAST spreadsheets are divided into seven areas of farm business analysis. Click on category title to see available tools:

Financial Analysis Tools aid in financial statement preparation, cash flow budgeting, and assessing the financial performance of a farm operation.

Investment AnalysisTools evaluate the economic impacts of investments in capital and financial assets.

Loan Analysis Tools assess various loan decisions and products.

Farm Management Tools aid in making farm production and management decisions.

Livestock Management Tools aid in making livestock production and management decisions.

Grain Marketing and Management Tools assist in tracking crop inventories from harvest to sale and evaluating grain storage decisions and marketing strategies.

Risk Management Tools help users make decisions to manage risk exposure.

Yield and Land Database Tools report state yield data and estimate soil productivity ratings.

FAST Summer 2014 Training: A Seminar for Producers and Ag-Professionals

Dates & Locations

  • August 18, 2014 - 1:00 PM to 5:00 PM
  • August 19, 2014 - 8:30 AM to 5:00 PM
  • August 20, 2014 - 8:30 AM to 12:00 PM

Topics

  • Financial Statements
  • Financial Planning
  • Farmland Purchase Analysis
  • Financial Management
  • Machinery and Building Purchase Decisions
  • Loan Analysis
  • Farm Management
  • Budget & Leasing Decisions
  • Machinery & Grain Management Decisions
  • Risk Management Decisions
  • Farm Bill Decisions

Registration & Details

Registration forms are available in the FAST Training Summer 2014 brouchure is available here

For any questions you may have, please contact:

Seminar Location

  • University of Illinois
  • ACES Library
  • 1101 S. Goodwin Ave.
  • Urbana, IL 61820

Hotel Accommodations

  • Hawthorn Suites
  • 101 Trade Center Drive
  • Champaign, IL 61801
See brochure for discounts here

Subscribe to FAST Tools and Resources DVD

Click here for information regarding the FAST DVD subscription service and to complete the subscription form. You can type your information directly into the form or print it to fill out by hand.
Click here to subscribe online (Visa or MasterCard accepted)
Contact Us
If you have any questions or comments regarding the FAST spreadsheets, FAST training workshops, or anything else relating to FAST Tools and Resources, please contact:

Ryan Batts
300B Mumford Hall
1301 West Gregory Drive
Urbana , IL 61801
Ph: (217) 333-1817
Fax: (217) 333-5538
Email: batts@illinois.edu

Department of Agricultural and Consumer Economics    College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences
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