JEFFERSON CITY — Farms and small businesses in Missouri have taken out more than $200 million in low-interest loans in the first half of the year through the Missouri Linked Deposit Program.
State Treasurer Clint Zweifel said the total includes more than $20 million in emergency 24-hour loan approvals.
The program deposits state money in banks, which then lend it to qualifying businesses and farmers at lower-than-usual rates. Loans are approved yearly for up to five years and are available with five-year fixed rates.
Zweifel said this year's participation in the program is nearly 50 percent higher than during the same period in 2010. Last year's total of $293 million in approved loans was a 10-year high.
Zweifel said this year's loans have affected nearly 4,000 jobs and farmers across the state.