GRAINS-Corn drops to one-week low on U.S. rains, wheat rises 1%

Credit: REUTERS/Jim Young

By Naveen Thukral

SINGAPORE, June 26 (Reuters) - Chicago corn futures slid for a third consecutive session on Monday to their lowest in one week, as forecasts for beneficial rain in the U.S. Midwest weighed on prices.

Wheat rose around 1% with tightening global supplies supporting prices.

"Certainly, stress on the corn crop has moderated with some rain, less heat, and less direct sunlight," commodities research firm Hightower said in a report.

The most-active corn contract on the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) Cv1 fell 0.3% to $5.86-1/4 a bushel, as of 0351 GMT, having dropped to its lowest since June 16 at $5.75-1/2 a bushel earlier in the session.

Wheat Wv1 added 0.9% to $7.53 a bushel while soybeans Sv1 were largely unchanged at 13.10-1/4 a bushel.

The latest weather projections pointed to significant rain in parts of the Midwest this week, which analysts said could bolster the condition of crops before key growth stages this summer.

Lower demand for U.S. agricultural products provided headwinds to prices.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture on Friday said weekly export sales of corn totalled just 83,100 metric tons, near the low end of market estimates that ranged from zero to 800,000 metric tons.

Wheat export sales were reported at 123,900 metric tons and soybean export sales at 626,300 metric tons. That compares with trade expectations of 100,000 to 400,000 metric tons for wheat and 100,000 to 900,000 metric tons for soybeans.

India may cut wheat import duty if required, broadcaster ET Now reported on Friday citing the head of the state-run Food Corporation of India.

The wheat harvest in 2023 is at least 10% lower than the government's estimate, a leading trade body told Reuters on Wednesday, marking the second year of low production which could complicate New Delhi's effort to keep a lid on the staple's prices.

The return of rain to northern Europe should help wheat crops after a hot, dry end to spring and may avert dire yield losses seen in drought-hit Spain, analysts and traders said.

Large speculators trimmed their net short position in Chicago Board of Trade corn futures in the week to June 20, regulatory data released on Friday showed.

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission's weekly commitments of traders report also showed that noncommercial traders, a category that includes hedge funds, trimmed their net short position in CBOT wheat and raised their net long position in soybeans.

(Reporting by Naveen Thukral; Editing by Rashmi Aich and Janane Venkatraman)

((naveen.thukral@thomsonreuters.com; +65-6870-3829; Reuters Messaging: naveen.thukral.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net))

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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