September 17, 2019 / 4:54 AM / a month ago

GRAINS-Corn falls on USDA condition report, strength in oil prices limit losses

    * Expected uptick in ethanol demand caps corn losses
    * Soybeans edges lower despite hopes for U.S.-China deal
    * Wheat falls despite delay in U.S. harvest 

    By Colin Packham
    SYDNEY, Sept 17 (Reuters) - U.S. corn futures declined on
Tuesday as a report showed better-than-expected condition of
crops, though losses were checked by expectations for an
increase in demand for oil-substitute ethanol.    
    The most active corn futures on the Chicago Board Of Trade
 were down 0.3% at $3.72-3/4 a bushel as of 0413 GMT. Corn
ended up 1.4% on Monday at $3.75 a bushel, the highest close
since Aug. 19. 
    Analysts attributed the fall to the better-than-expected
condition of U.S. crops, though a recent rally in the price of
oil provided a floor.
    "The likely gains in ethanol demand if oil prices maintain
these new levels and lower forecasts for EU crops likely helps,"
said Tobin Gorey, director of agricultural strategy,
Commonwealth Bank of Australia.
    The USDA said 55% of the U.S. corn crop is in
good-to-excellent condition, slightly ahead of market
    The most active soybean futures were down 0.1% at
$8.99-1/4 a bushel. Soybeans ended 0.1% firmer on Monday,
closing at their highest level since July 29.
    The USDA said 54% of the U.S. soybean crop is in
good-to-excellent condition, matching analysts' forecasts.
    Traders also noted support from a National Oilseed
Processors Association report that pegged August soybean
crushings in the United States at 168.085 million bushels, above
the average trade estimate of 162.018 million and the
seventh-highest crush on record for any month.
    The uptick in demand comes amid renewed hopes for a deal to
calm the U.S.-China trade war, stoked by recent purchases by
    The USDA on Monday confirmed private sales of 256,000 tonnes
of U.S. soybeans to China.
    The most active wheat futures were down 0.6% at
$4.85-3/4 a bushel, having closed up 1.1% in the previous
    The USDA said 76% of the U.S. spring wheat crop has been
harvested, lagging well behind market expectations.
 Grains prices at  0413 GMT
 Contract       Last  Change  Pct chg  Two-day chg   MA 30   RSI 
 CBOT wheat   485.75   -3.00   -0.61%       +0.47%  477.66     59
 CBOT corn    372.75   -1.25   -0.33%       +1.08%  374.83     67
 CBOT soy     899.25   -0.75   -0.08%       +0.06%  873.99     77
 CBOT rice     12.22   $0.00   +0.00%       -0.33%  $11.76     88
 WTI crude     62.08  -$0.82   -1.30%      +13.18%  $55.71     72
 Euro/dlr     $1.101  $0.001   +0.09%       -0.57%               
 USD/AUD      0.6841  -0.002   -0.34%       -0.52%               
 Most active contracts
 Wheat, corn and soy US cents/bushel. Rice: USD per hundredweight
 RSI 14, exponential

 (Reporting by Colin Packham; Editing by Aditya Soni)
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