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Grain futures lower with USDA supply report in focus

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Investing.com - U.S. grain futures were mildly lower during European morning hours on Wednesday, as investors readjusted positions ahead of the U.S. Department of Agriculture's closely-watched monthly report on U.S. and global grain supplies later in the week.

The USDA will release its updated supply and demand and crop production reports on Friday, January 11.

Grain traders continued to closely monitor weather conditions in major South American growers Brazil and Argentina.

On the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, soybeans futures for March delivery traded at USD13.8512 a bushel, shedding 0.1% on the day. The March contract was stuck in a trading range between USD13.8112 a bushel, the daily low and a session high of USD13.9188 a bushel.

Soy prices fell to a seven-month low of USD13.5612 a bushel on January 4.

Meanwhile, corn futures for March delivery traded at USD6.8662 a bushel, down 0.3% on the day.

The March contract traded in a range between USD6.8662 a bushel, the daily low and a session high of USD6.9062 a bushel. Corn futures fell to a six-month low of USD6.7988 a bushel on January 4.

Corn and soy traders continued to monitor crop conditions in Argentina and Brazil, major South American growers. The countries will harvest their crops during the next three to four months.

The USDA will update its South American crop forecasts in its January crop report on Friday.

The data could show Argentina's soybean harvest fell to 54.6 million tons, compared with USDA's previous outlook of 55 million tons.

The nation's corn crop will probably reach 25.9 million metric tons, smaller than the 27.5 million tons forecast by the USDA last month.

In Brazil, the soybean crop may reach 81.9 million tons, compared to the USDA's forecast for 81 million tons in December.

The corn crop in Brazil will probably total 70.4 million tons, above the 70 million tons estimated by the USDA in December.

Corn prices have lost almost 10% since the start of December, as worries over slowing overseas demand for supplies from the U.S. have weighed on sentiment.

Elsewhere, wheat for March delivery traded at USD7.5100 a bushel, up 0.2% on the day. The March contract traded in a range between USD7.4788 a bushel, the daily low and a session high of USD7.5425 a bushel.

Wheat prices fell to a six-montn low of USD7.3988 a bushel on January 4.

U.S. wheat stockpiles before the 2013 harvest could fall to 741 million bushels, down from a previous USDA estimate of 754 million.

Wheat prices have been under heavy selling pressure in recent weeks, losing nearly 13% since the beginning of December, as technical selling and concerns over poor export demand weighed on sentiment.

Corn is the biggest U.S. crop, followed by soybeans, government figures show. Wheat was fourth, behind hay.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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