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Grain pricing and transportation: dynamics and changes in markets


  • William W. Wilson
  • Bruce Dahl


There are important challenges to the grain handling and shipping industries. The study evaluated changes in marketing costs for the primary grain marketing functions and quantified measures of risk. The results indicate that 1) basis risk has increased; 2) all marketing costs have increased; 3) the increase in rail tariffs were less than those for the other modes; 4) car values, on average declined; 5) FSC’s had moderate changes in absolute terms; 6) handling margins have had fairly substantial increases, particularly at port; and 7) the riskiness in rail shipping costs are less than those of competing modes and functions. The regression model indicated the following variables had significant impacts on origin basis values: shipping costs, ocean rate spreads, outstanding export sales, handling industry concentration, measures of rail cars late, the ratio of supplies to storage capacity, futures prices and spreads (in addition to a few other minor impacts).
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Suggested Citation

  • William W. Wilson & Bruce Dahl, 2011. "Grain pricing and transportation: dynamics and changes in markets," Agribusiness, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 27(4), pages 420-434, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:agribz:v:27:y:2011:i:4:p:420-434

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    Cited by:

    1. Shakya, Sumadhur & Wilson, William & Dahl, Bruce L., 2012. "Pulsating Market Boundaries and Spatial Arbitrage in US Gulf Region: Impact of Panama Canal Expansion on US Agriculture," 53rd Annual Transportation Research Forum, Tampa, Florida, March 15-17, 2012 207098, Transportation Research Forum.
    2. James B. Bushnell & Jonathan E. Hughes & Aaron Smith, 2017. "Food vs. Fuel? Impacts of Petroleum Shipments on Agricultural Prices," NBER Working Papers 23924, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Bollman, Ray & Ferguson, Shon, 2016. "The Local Impacts of Agricultural Subsidies: Evidence from the Canadian Prairies," Working Paper Series 1129, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.

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