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Western Canadian wheat bids climb as loonie falls

The dollar dipped about 1-1/2 cents on the week

Spring wheat bids in Western Canada posted solid gains during the week ended March 3 as weakness in the Canadian dollar gave basis levels a boost.

Depending on the location, average Canada Western Red Spring (CWRS) wheat prices were up $5-$10 per tonne across the Prairie provinces, according to price quotes from a cross-section of delivery points compiled by PDQ (Price and Data Quotes). Average prices ranged from about $226 per tonne in western Manitoba to as high as C$246 in northern Alberta.

Quoted basis levels varied from location to location, but widened by as much as $10 per tonne in most regions to range from about $26 to $45 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$169 to US$184 per tonne. That would put the currency-adjusted basis levels at about US$17-$32 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 $23 to $43 below the futures.

Canada Prairie Spring Red (CPSR) wheat bids were up by $11-$12 per tonne, with prices ranging from $168 to $186 per tonne.

Average durum prices were up by $2-$4, with bids in Saskatchewan coming in at about $262 to $265 per tonne.

The May spring wheat contract in Minneapolis, off of which most CWRS contracts in Canada are based, was quoted March 3 at US$5.4775 per bushel, down six U.S. 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 March 3 at US$4.7175 per bushel, up 4.75 U.S. cents compared to the previous week.

The May Chicago Board of Trade soft wheat contract settled March 3 at US$4.535, up by about 5.5 U.S. cents on the week.

The Canadian dollar settled March 3 at 74.74 U.S. cents, down by roughly 1-1/2 cents relative to its U.S. counterpart compared to the previous week.

About the author

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Phil Franz-Warkentin - MarketsFarm

Phil Franz-Warkentin writes for MarketsFarm specializing in grain and commodity market reporting.

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