October 16, 2018 / 2:22 AM / a month ago

GRAINS-Soybean prices ease after 3-day rally, wheat at 2-wk high

Oct 16 (Reuters) - Chicago soybean prices edged down on Tuesday, taking a breather after three sessions of gains as rains in parts of the U.S. Midwest slowed the pace of harvest and raised concerns over crop quality.

Wheat rose, trading near its highest in almost two weeks as prices were underpinned by tightening global supplies.

FUNDAMENTALS

* The Chicago Board of Trade’s most-active soybean contract had fallen 0.4 percent to $8.88-1/4 a bushel by 0148 GMT, after climbing 4.6 percent in the last three sessions.

* Wheat gained 0.1 percent to $5.25-1/4 a bushel, while corn lost 0.4 percent to $3.76-3/4 a bushel.

* U.S. farmers have harvested 38 percent of their soybean crop as compared with the five-year average of 53 percent, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said in its weekly report after the market closed on Monday.

* It said 39 percent of the corn crop was harvested, higher than the five-year average of 35 percent.

* Heavy rains last week may have damaged some U.S. crops and also delayed the harvest, boosting demand at elevators and processors that need supplies to fuel the active pace of crushing.

* U.S. processors crushed 160.779 million bushels of soybeans in September, the largest-ever processing volume for the month, the National Oilseed Processors Association (NOPA) said on Monday.

* The figure was up from the 158.885 million bushels processed in August and well above the September 2017 crush of 136.419 million bushels, according to NOPA, whose members handle about 95 percent of all soybeans processed in the United States.

* The wheat market is being supported by tightening global supplies with lower output in leading exporters Russia and Australia.

* Commodity funds were net buyers of CBOT corn, soybean, soymeal, soyoil and wheat futures contracts on Monday, traders said.

* Trade estimates of net fund buying in corn ranged widely from 15,000 to 35,000 contracts.

MARKET NEWS

* Asian stocks bounced modestly on Tuesday, gaining a toe-hold after a week of heavy losses, although increasing tensions between Saudi Arabia and the West fanned geopolitical concerns and capped gains.

DATA AHEAD (GMT) 0130 China Consumer prices Sep 0130 China Producer prices Sep 0600 Germany Import prices Sep 0900 Germany ZEW economic sentiment Oct 0900 Euro zone Eurostat trade Aug 0900 Euro zone ZEW survey expectations Oct 1315 U.S. Industrial production Sep 1400 U.S. NAHB housing market index Oct (Reporting by Naveen Thukral Editing by Joseph Radford)

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