January 3, 2019 / 4:11 AM / 6 months ago

GRAINS-Soybeans trade near two-week top on Brazil weather concerns

 (Updates with latest prices)
    By Emily Chow
    KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 3 (Reuters) - U.S. soybean futures firmed
on Thursday, trading near two-week highs on the prospect of
declining yields in top producer Brazil due to scarce rains.    
    The most-active soybean contract on the Chicago Board Of
Trade was up slightly at $9.07-1/4 a bushel by 0357 GMT,
after gaining over 1 percent in the previous session.
    Farmers expect soybean yields and output in Mato Grosso,
Brazil's largest producing state, to be hit by scarce rains in
December. Dry weather and high temperatures are also
accelerating the soybean cycle, leading some growers to
anticipate harvesting even at the risk of lowering yields.

    Wheat futures rose 0.2 percent at $5.07-3/4 a bushel
in line for a second session of gains on short-covering and
concerns about excessive rains in Argentina. 
    Russian wheat exports rose sharply to 1.2 million tonnes in
the last week of December, but trade is expected to be thin
during the Dec. 30-Jan. 8 New Year holiday, said an agricultural
    Meanwhile, corn slipped 0.1 percent to $3.75-1/2 a
bushel after edging up 0.2 percent yesterday.
    Traders are also optimistic about easing trade tensions
between China and the United States, and the prospect that China
could buy more U.S. soybeans as a trade delegation heads to
Beijing for talks on Jan. 7.
    The U.S. Department of Agriculture will decide on Friday
whether to delay a slew of key crop reports scheduled for
release on Jan. 11. 
    A partial government shutdown has prompted the USDA to
suspend daily and weekly export sales reports, worrying grain
traders who rely on the data.
 Contract    Last    Change   Pct chg  Two-day chg  MA 30   RSI
 CBOT wheat  507.75  1.00     +0.20%   -0.73%       517.30  41
 CBOT corn   375.50  -0.25    -0.07%   +0.00%       378.13  48
 CBOT soy    907.25  0.25     +0.03%   +1.31%       906.72  56
 CBOT rice   10.36   $0.01    +0.10%   +0.48%       $10.70  21
 WTI crude   45.69   -$0.85   -1.83%   +0.79%       $49.88  
 Euro/dlr    $1.137  -$0.007  -0.62%   -0.56%               
 USD/AUD     0.6929  -0.011   -1.59%   -1.48%               

 (Reporting by Emily Chow; editing by Richard Pullin and Sunil
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