March 20, 2012 / 3:22 AM / 6 years ago

GRAINS-Wheat falls for 2nd day on US weather; corn, soy ease

* Wheat down 1 pct on warm, wet weather in U.S. Plains
    * Corn, soy fall after rising to multi-month top
    * Market eyes increase in U.S. corn plantings
    * Argentine truckers strike as soy harvest starts

 (Adds details, quotes)	
    By Naveen Thukral	
    SINGAPORE, March 20 (Reuters) - Chicago wheat extended
losses on Tuesday, sliding more than 1 percent as forecasts of
crop-friendly weather in the U.S. Plains boosted supply
prospects.	
    Corn fell to its lowest in almost a week and soybeans
dropped for a second day in a row on a softening cash market and
profit-taking after both markets climbed to multi-month highs on
Monday.	
    "Warm temperatures and scattered rain in the U.S. are
promoting rapid development of the winter wheat crop," said Luke
Mathews, commodities strategist at Commonwealth Bank of
Australia. "Forecast relief to dryness in southwest Europe and
western Canada is also weighing on values."	
    Chicago Board of Trade May wheat fell 1.3 percent to
$6.44 a bushel by 0232 GMT, taking combined losses over two
sessions to more than 4 percent. 	
    Rain showers are expected to march across parts of the
Plains and U.S. Midwest, which should benefit the wheat crop. 	
    Texas A & M University entomologist James Swart said the
weather conditions and crop development rate this season are
highly unusual, with wheat development 10 days to two weeks
ahead of normal.	
    There was additional pressure on the wheat market as Russia
said there was no need to restrict grain exports during the
current crop year, which saw the country emerge from a
near-total ban to export record volumes. 	
    Data released by the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading
Commission late on Friday indicated larger-than-expected sales
of CBOT wheat futures by large speculators in the week ended
March 13, a signal that has prompted further selling.	
    In other grain markets, May corn lost 1.1 percent to
$6.56-1/4 a bushel, after rising to its the highest since Nov.
10 on Monday. May soybeans were down 0.6 percent to $13.58
a bushel, drifting further from six-month highs.	
    Soybean futures have rallied for five straight weeks on
robust U.S. exports, especially to top buyer China, amid lower
supplies from drought-hit Brazil and Argentina. The market has
also drawn support from worries that U.S. farmers might not
plant enough new-crop soybeans this spring to meet global
demand.	
    But corn and soybeans faced pressure from softening cash
markets since Monday amid scattered farmer sales and
unseasonably mild weather that should favour an early start to
corn planting in the U.S.	
    The market is anticipating an increase in U.S. corn
plantings from the previous year and little change in U.S.
soybean acreage. 	
    Investors are also closely watching an indefinite strike by
Argentina's truckers to demand higher pay rates, parking their
rigs in protest just as exporters were counting on them to haul
freshly harvested soybeans to port.	
    Grains powerhouse Argentina is the world's No. 1 supplier of
soyoil, a feedstock for the booming international biofuels
sector. It is also a top soybean and corn exporter. 
 	
    	
  Prices at  0232 GMT
  Contract        Last    Change  Pct chg  Two-day chg MA 30   RSI 
  CBOT wheat     644.00    -8.25  -1.26%    -4.17%     652.55   42
  CBOT corn      656.25    -7.25  -1.09%    -2.49%     648.10   44
  CBOT soy      1358.00    -8.50  -0.62%    -1.16%    1304.57   66
  CBOT rice      $14.58   -$0.03  -0.21%    +1.78%     $14.33   66
  WTI crude     $107.57   -$0.52  -0.48%    +0.48%    $105.00   60
  Currencies                                                
  Euro/dlr       $1.323   $0.012  +0.92%    +0.85%
  USD/AUD         1.057    0.001  +0.08%    -0.05%
  Most active contracts
  Wheat, corn and soy US cents/bushel. Rice: USD per hundredweight
  RSI 14, exponential
 	
 (Editing by Himani Sarkar)

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