December 27, 2016 / 6:08 PM / 8 months ago

Soaring U.S. markets push EU wheat futures higher

PARIS (Reuters) - European wheat prices rose on Tuesday, supported by soaring U.S. markets at a time when the euro remains low against the dollar but activity was thin with many operators on Christmas holiday.

March milling wheat on the Paris-based Euronext exchange unofficially closed up 2.0 euros or 1.2 percent at 167.75 euros a tonne.

At the same time, the most active wheat contract on the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) was up 4.1 percent at $4.10 a bushel on expectations of strong demand, notably from India where two years of lower output has depleted stockpiles.

Both the CBOT and Euronext were closed on Monday.

"The rise is there but is nowhere close to Chicago, which is buoyed by good export demand for U.S. grains," a trader said. "We are not so enthusiastic about exports here."

German cash market premiums in Hamburg were little changed with prices regarded as nominal in quiet after-Christmas trade.

Standard wheat with 12 percent protein content for January delivery in Hamburg was offered for sale nominally at an unchanged 4 euros over the Paris March contract. Buyers were seeking 3.5 euros over.

"There is not really a real market today as so many people are absent," one German trader said. "I do not expect normal business to really get going again until next week."

A nearby focus is on whether low water on the Rhine and other rivers are the recent dry weather will spark short covering by mills and feed makers, he said.

Jordan's state grain buyer made no purchase in a tender to buy 25,000 tonnes of milling wheat which closed on Monday, traders said. A new tender for 25,000 tonnes of wheat has been issued closing on Jan. 2.

Reporting by Sybille de La Hamaide and Michael Hogan in Hamburg; Editing by Hugh Lawson

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