March 13, 2018 / 4:46 AM / 6 days ago

GRAINS-Wheat firms as USDA confirms adverse weather has damaged crops

    * Wheat extends gains into second straight session
    * Soybeans firm despite fears for Chinese demand 
    * Corn edges higher 

    By Colin Packham
    SYDNEY, March 13 (Reuters) - U.S. wheat futures edged higher
on Tuesday as the U.S. Department of Agriculture said production
in a key growing region was hit by adverse weather last week.
    Corn edged higher, extending gains into a second session,
while soybeans firmed despite fears about potential curbs in
Chinese demand for U.S. supplies.
    The most active wheat futures on the Chicago Board Of Trade
 were up 0.4 percent at $4.92-1/2 a bushel by 0426 GMT,
having closed up 0.3 percent on Monday.
    Analysts said wheat was drawing support from confirmation of
further damage to crops across a major producing region.
    "Winter kill due to a lack of snow cover and a lack of
moisture have damaged crops again. This is supportive to
prices," said Angus Thornton, analyst at Profarmer.
    The U.S. Department of Agriculture after the close of
trading on Monday rated 12 percent of the Kansas winter wheat
crop in good to excellent condition, down from 13 percent a week
    The USDA rated 53 percent of the Kansas crop as poor to very
poor, up from 50 percent the previous week. 
    The USDA earlier on Monday said 389,358 tonnes of U.S. wheat
were exported last week, within the range of expectations.
Exports of 910,237 tonnes of soybeans were also within
expectations, while corn exports of 1.4 million tonnes topped
estimates. USDA/I, USDA/EST
    The most active corn futures were up 0.1 percent at
$3.90-1/2 a bushel after closing up 0.1 on Monday.
    The most active soybean futures were up 0.4 percent to
$10.45 a bushel, after closing up 0.2 percent in the previous
session when it hit its lowest since Feb. 21.
    Dry weather continues to grip Argentina, a situation that is
unlikely to be aided significantly by showers expected this
    Chinese officials have said U.S. soybeans are a prime target
for retaliation against tariffs imposed by the Trump
administration on steel and aluminium imports, according to the
American Soybean Association.
 Grains prices at  0426 GMT
 Contract       Last  Change  Pct chg  Two-day chg    MA 30  RSI 
 CBOT wheat   492.50    1.75   +0.36%       +0.66%   478.10    57
 CBOT corn    391.00    0.25   +0.06%       +0.13%   377.77    69
 CBOT soy    1045.00    4.00   +0.38%       +0.55%  1032.48    41
 CBOT rice     12.31   $0.00   +0.00%       -1.01%   $12.44    42
 WTI crude     61.23  -$0.13   -0.21%       -1.31%   $62.13    44
 Euro/dlr     $1.233  $0.000   -0.02%       +0.20%               
 USD/AUD      0.7875   0.000   +0.04%       +0.33%               
 Most active contracts
 Wheat, corn and soy US cents/bushel. Rice: USD per hundredweight
 RSI 14, exponential
 (Reporting by Colin Packham; Editing by Sunil Nair)
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