MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA — The Australian Wheat Board (AWB) has increased estimated pool returns (EPRs) for its 2011-12 AWB Pools benchmark wheat grade APW by A$2 tonne, lower wheat grades have be increased by A$2 to A$3 a tonne however high protein wheat grades remain under pressure and have been lowered by between A$2 and A$10 a tonne.

AWB’s 2011-12 EPRs for APW wheat is up A$2 to A$265 a tonne and ANW noodle wheat is up A$2 to A$278 a tonne in the WA Pool, APW is up A$2 to A$259 a tonne in the SA Pool and up A$2 to A$260 a tonne in the Eastern Pool (FOB, excl GST).

“While the decline in the Australian dollar is supportive of Australian wheat prices, global wheat values remain volatile and without any clear direction,” said AWB’s Richard Williams. “The recent wheat futures rally was shorted lived and the market has retracted over 50 per cent of the rally and we are now well inside the range which we have been trading for the majority of year.

“This rally was driven by market concerns over Russian and Australian crop prospects and weather conditions associated with the US corn which resulted in fund managers looking to cover short positions.

 “Australian high protein wheat grades remain under pressure as US and Canadian spring wheat crops look in excellent condition at this early stage.

“This combined with a near record crop in the US of hard red winter wheat and an expected very large North American high protein crop continues to weigh heavily on Australian high protein wheat grades.”