Prairie cash wheat: Red spring wheats gain ground, durum dips

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MarketsFarm — Wheat prices on the Canadian Prairies saw upticks in the red spring varieties during the week ended Thursday, while durum stepped back a little.

A strong upswing in the U.S. wheat complex lent support to Canadian cash prices, but a slightly higher dollar tempered further increases.

There’s continued dryness in the U.S., especially across the southern Plains, that buoyed wheat prices. Also, there are less-than-ideal conditions for snow cover over the northern Plains and Western Canada.

Negotiations being brokered by the United Nations and Turkey to extend the Black Sea export deal produced some progress. Russia said it would agree to a 60-day extension, while Ukraine pushed for 120 days.

Average Canada Western Red Spring (CWRS, 13.5 per cent protein) wheat prices saw increases of $9.80-$11.80 per tonne, according to price quotes from a cross-section of delivery points compiled by PDQ (Price and Data Quotes). Average prices ranged from about $391.90 per tonne in southeastern Saskatchewan to $411.90 per tonne in northern Alberta.

Quoted basis levels varied from location to location and ranged from $79.90 to $99.90 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$285.10 to US$299.70 per tonne. That would put the currency-adjusted basis levels at about US$12.30-$26.80 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 ranged from $8.90 to $19.50 below the futures.

Average Canada Prairie Spring Red (CPSR, 11.5 per cent protein) wheat prices advanced $13.60-$15.50 per tonne. Bids ranged from $375.70 per tonne in southeastern Saskatchewan to $394.90 per tonne in southern Alberta.

Average Canada Western Amber Durum (CWAD) prices slipped back by between 60 cents and $3.70 per tonne, with bids ranging from $450.90 per tonne in northeastern Saskatchewan to $467.10 per tonne in southern Alberta.

The May spring wheat contract in Minneapolis, off of which most CWRS contracts in Canada are based, was quoted Thursday at US$8.49 per bushel, rising 33.25 U.S. cents on the 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 Thursday at US$8.1975 per bushel, adding on 42.5 U.S. cents compared to a week ago.

The May Chicago Board of Trade soft wheat contract settled at US$6.99 per bushel on Thursday, increasing 33.25 U.S. cents from the previous week.

The Canadian dollar tacked on almost a quarter of a cent during the week, with the loonie closing at 72.76 U.S. cents on Thursday.

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