Prairie wheat cash bids down sharply as harvest progresses

Cash bids for spring wheat were down sharply across Western Canada during the week ending Monday, with pressure from advancing harvest activities in Western Canada weighing on values.

Basis levels for both Canada Western red spring (CWRS) and Canada Prairie red spring (CPRS) also widened significantly, amid reports of good yields and lower than average protein levels.

Average spot bids on Monday for CWRS at 13.5 per cent protein across Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta came in at around C$227 per tonne ($6.18 per bushel) based on pricing available from a cross-section of delivery points, which compares to $243 per tonne ($6.62/bu.) the week prior.

Basis levels widened to average discount of C$31 relative to the futures, from a $23 discount seen the previous week.

Average CPRS values were at C$202 per tonne ($5.50/bu.). That compares with prices of C$217 per tonne ($5.91/bu.) the previous week. Average basis levels widened to a discount of C$51 compared to futures, from $40 the week prior.

U.S. wheat futures were weaker as well, with large Canadian crop prospects and pressure from the U.S. and Canadian harvests undermining values.

The December spring wheat contract in Minneapolis, which most CWRS contracts in Canada are based off of, was quoted at US$7.0275 per bushel on Monday, down 22.25 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 December Kansas City wheat contract lost 10.5 cents over the week, finishing at US$6.885 per bushel on Monday.

Durum prices moved sharply lower amid harvest pressure and reports of large yields in Western Canada. Average spot bids were down by C$21 per tonne from the week prior at $239 ($6.50/bu.).

— Terryn Shiells writes for Commodity News Service Canada, a Winnipeg company specializing in grain and commodity market reporting.

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