Prairie spring wheat bids rise with U.S. futures

CNS Canada — Cash spring wheat bids across Western Canada moved higher during the week ended Friday, as U.S. futures moved up and basis levels held reasonably steady.

Average Canada Western Red Spring (CWRS) wheat prices were up by about $2-$5 per tonne over the course of the week, according to price quotes from a cross-section of delivery points across the Prairie provinces compiled by PDQ (Price and Data Quotes). Average prices ranged from about $221 per tonne in southeastern Saskatchewan to as high as $237 in southern Alberta.

Quoted basis levels varied from location to location, but improved by about $1 per tonne on average, to sit at roughly $45-$55 per tonne above the futures when using the grain company methodology of quoting the basis as the difference between U.S. dollar-denominated futures and Canadian dollar cash bids.

When accounting for currency exchange rates by adjusting Canadian prices to U.S. dollars, CWRS bids ranged from US$160 to US$172 per tonne. That would put the currency adjusted basis levels at about US$9-$21 below the futures.

Looking at it the other way around, if the Minneapolis futures are converted to Canadian dollars, CWRS basis levels across Western Canada range from $12 to $29 below the futures.

Average Canada Prairie Spring Red (CPSR) bids were up $2-$9 per tonne compared to the previous week. Average CPSR prices came in at about $173-$183 per tonne in Saskatchewan and Manitoba, and $191-$199 per tonne in Alberta.

Average durum prices held relatively steady during the week, with bids in Saskatchewan ranging from roughly $305-$309 per tonne.

The May spring wheat contract in Minneapolis, off of which most CWRS contracts in Canada are based, was quoted at US$4.9775 per bushel on Friday, up US10.25 cents from the previous week.

Kansas City hard red winter wheat futures, traded in Chicago, are more closely linked to CPSR in Canada. The May K.C. wheat contract was quoted at US$4.6625 per bushel on Friday, up US12.5 cents compared to the previous week.

The May Chicago Board of Trade soft wheat contract settled Friday at US$4.6675, US4.25 cents higher compared to one week earlier.

The Canadian dollar closed Feb. 19 at US72.63 cents, up by about half a cent relative to its U.S. counterpart compared to the previous week.

Phil Franz-Warkentin writes for Commodity News Service Canada, a Winnipeg company specializing in grain and commodity market reporting.

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