September 13, 2018 / 3:38 AM / in 7 months

GRAINS-Corn firms after deep losses on higher U.S. output, while soybeans ease

* U.S. forecasts corn harvest as second biggest in history

* Surprise increase in Russian wheat output after drought

* China’s soybean futures under pressure amid trade talks (Recasts, adds quotes, details)

By Naveen Thukral

SINGAPORE, Sept 13 (Reuters) - Chicago corn rose on Thursday as the market rebounded after the biggest one-day decline in more than a year, although it remained under pressure from a crop report that pegged U.S. output above market expectations.

Wheat was unchanged following two days of losses, with a surprise increase in Russian production capping the market.

The most-active corn contract on the Chicago Board of Trade rose 0.4 percent to $3.53-3/4 a bushel by 0259 GMT. It closed down 3.9 percent in the previous session, the biggest one-day loss since August 2017.

Wheat was flat at $5.06-3/4 a bushel, having closed down 2.3 percent on Wednesday. Soybeans gave up 0.5 percent to $8.35-3/4, having firmed 1 percent the day before.

“Higher Russian wheat output is bit of a surprise given the dry weather they had during the growing period,” said Phin Ziebell, an agribusiness economist with National Australia Bank.

“U.S. corn and soybean crops seem to be doing really well.”

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), in its monthly supply and demand report, pegged the 2018/19 corn harvest at 14.827 billion bushels, which would be the second biggest ever.

The agency also estimated U.S. soybean output at a record-high 4.693 billion bushels.

The USDA increased its forecast for the Russian wheat harvest to 71 million tonnes, up from a previous estimate of 68 million tonnes, when many traders expected lower output amid a European drought that has stoked fears of export curbs.

Dry weather in some Russian regions is still posing a risk to next year’s grain crop, analysts and an industry group said.

In the soybean market, the focus is on trade talks between Washington and Beijing.

“The market is closely watching U.S.-China trade talks and any positive development will be supportive for U.S. soybeans and bearish for Chinese market,” Ziebell said.

China’s Dalian soybean futures slid almost 2 percent and soymeal gave up 2.5 percent.

China’s Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs slashed its forecast for 2018/19 soybean imports as farmers reduce their use of the bean in animal feed because of the trade conflict with the United States.

Argentina’s soy harvest is expected to reach 50 million tonnes during the 2018/19 season, while estimates for corn production fell to 43 million tonnes, down from around 45 million tonnes previously, the Rosario grains exchange said on Wednesday.

Commodity funds were net sellers of CBOT corn, wheat and soyoil futures contracts on Wednesday and net buyers of soybeans and soymeal futures, traders said. (Reporting by Naveen Thukral; Editing by Tom Hogue)

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