Canadian spring wheat bids down as loonie rises and futures drop

Winnipeg (CNS Canada) – Hard red spring wheat bids in Western Canada moved lower during the week ended May 11, as a rally in the Canadian dollar and losses in the United States futures weighed on values.

Forecasts calling for improving moisture conditions in U.S. winter wheat growing regions accounted for some of the selling pressure, while better spring wheat seeding conditions to the north were also bearish.

Depending on the location, average Canada Western Red Spring (13.5 percent CWRS) wheat prices were down by C$5 to C$8 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 C$229 per tonne in northwestern Saskatchewan, to as high as C$257 in northern Alberta.

Quoted basis levels varied from location to location and ranged from $7 to $35 per tonne above the futures when using the grain company methodology of quoting the basis as the difference between the U.S. dollar denominated futures and the Canadian dollar cash bids.

When accounting for currency exchange rates by adjusting Canadian prices to U.S. dollars (C$1=US$0.7825) CWRS bids ranged from US$179 to US$201 per tonne. That would put the currency adjusted basis levels at about US$21 to US$43 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 C$27 to C$55 below the futures.

Canada Prairie Red Spring (CPRS) wheat bids were weaker, losing anywhere from C$4 to C$22 per tonne depending on the location. Prices ranged from C$196 to C$215 per tonne.

Average durum prices were steady to slightly higher, with bids in Saskatchewan coming in at about C$235 to C$261 per tonne.

The July spring wheat contract in Minneapolis, which most CWRS contracts Canada are based off of, was quoted at US$6.0500 per bushel on May 11, down by 18.00 U.S. cents from the previous week.

The Kansas City hard red winter wheat futures, which are now traded in Chicago, are more closely linked to CPRS in Canada. The July Kansas City wheat contract was quoted at US$5.1800 per bushel on May 11, down by 37.75 U.S. cents compared to the previous week.

The July Chicago Board of Trade soft wheat contract settled at US$4.9875 on May 11, which was down by 27.50 U.S. cents on the week.

The Canadian dollar settled at 78.25 U.S cents on May 11, which was up by roughly half a cent on the week.

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