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GRAINS-U.S. corn hits 1-1/2-week low on prospects for dry weather
April 19, 2017 / 2:25 AM / 4 months ago

GRAINS-U.S. corn hits 1-1/2-week low on prospects for dry weather

* Dry weather in U.S. Midwest to speed up corn seeding - CBA

* Soy rebounds after 2-day drop; wheat steadies near lows (Adds comment, China's corn planting, updates prices)

By Manolo Serapio Jr

MANILA, April 19 (Reuters) - U.S. corn futures slipped to their lowest in one and a half weeks on Wednesday amid expectations of dry weather in the country's corn belt that will allow farmers to speed up seeding.

Soybeans bounced back from a two-day decline, while wheat steadied near recent lows.

Corn for May delivery on the Chicago Board of Trade fell as far as $3.60-1/2 a bushel earlier in the Asian session, before turning flat at $3.61-1/2 by 0215 GMT.

"Showery conditions are still expected to interrupt field work across the Midwest - and particularly the lower Midwest - for the next ten days or so," Commonwealth Bank of Australia analyst Tobin Gorey said in a note.

But forecasters are now looking at drier weather at the end of April or start of May in the U.S. Midwest which should allow farmers to make better progress with fieldwork, Gorey said.

In China, farmers will plant less corn this season, resulting in the smallest crop in six years, as the world's top grains producer seeks to trim its huge corn glut and boost production of soybeans, according to a Reuters poll of analysts.

Chicago soybeans advanced 0.3 percent to $9.48-3/4 a bushel after a two-day drop that traders had blamed on worries over demand following the release of disappointing U.S. export data and a bearish monthly crush report on Monday.

The National Oilseed Processors Association said U.S. processors crushed fewer soybeans than expected during March at 153.060 million bushels.

Wheat slipped 0.2 percent to $4.21-3/4 per bushel.

While "the market appeared to find a small seam of late buying" after wheat recently dipped below the $4.35 level, prices remain near season lows due to the weight of global supply, said CBA's Gorey.

Elsewhere in Asia, oil prices slipped, but sterling climbed to more than six-month highs amid speculation Britain's surprise decision to call a snap election could ultimately deliver a more market-friendly outcome in its divorce from the European Union.

Reporting by Manolo Serapio Jr.; Editing by Kenneth Maxwell

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