Banks that lend to farmers appear to be emerging from the recession relatively unscathed, with the latest federal data showing that agriculture lending continued to outperform most other segments of the banking industry in the third quarter.

Profits were up while chargeoffs were flat for so-called agriculture banks, a classification regulators give to lenders with at least 25% of their loan books tied farm loans. Farm loan volumes rose slightly while most other lending categories fell, including commercial and credit card loans, according to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.

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