February 11, 2020 / 4:23 AM / 7 days ago

GRAINS-Soybeans extend gains; market awaits USDA report

* Soybeans firm for 7th straight session

* Corn extends losses into second session

* Wheat falls to 8-day low

By Colin Packham

SYDNEY, Feb 11 (Reuters) - U.S. soybean futures rose for a seventh consecutive session on Tuesday as China tempered fears that the coronavirus outbreak will see Beijing failing to fulfil its commitment to buy North American supplies.

Corn fell for a second straight session, while wheat fell more than 0.5% to hit a eight-day low.

The most active soybean futures on the Chicago Board Of Trade were up 0.4% at $8.87-3/4 a bushel by 0340 GMT, after having risen 0.3% on Monday, when prices hit its highest level since Jan. 31 of $8.89-3/4 a bushel.

Analysts said China’s commitment to buying North American supplies continued to drive gains, though the outbreak of coronavirus looms over the market.

“Stories about supply chains being disrupted by the flu epidemic is growing, but that may or may not be evidence the economic consequences are worsening,” said Tobin Gorey, director of agricultural strategy at the Commonwealth Bank of Australia.

Chinese President Xi Jinping told U.S. President Donald Trump that China would meet its Phase 1 trade deal purchasing targets despite delays linked to the coronavirus, White House adviser Larry Kudlow told Bloomberg Television on Friday.

The market, however, is waiting for proof of fresh Chinese demand before pushing prices any higher

The Phase 1 deal states that China in 2020 will increase U.S. agricultural purchases by no less than $12.5 billion above the 2017 baseline and the 2021 amount will be at least $19.5 billion above the baseline.

The impact of coronavirus is already impacting sales in Brazil.

For the first five working days of February, soybean exports declined to 198,600 tonnes per day on average from 263,500 tonnes per day in February 2019, according to Economy Ministry figures.

While the Chinese purchases will not be included, traders are waiting for the next U.S. Department of Agriculture’s monthly supply and demand forecast report due on Tuesday.

Analysts predict USDA will reduce 2019-20 U.S. corn, soybean and wheat ending stocks on Tuesday. These polls were conducted prior to USDA’s statement about the trade agreement.

The most active corn futures were down 0.2% at $3.81 a bushel, having closed down 0.5% in the previous session.

The most active wheat futures were down 0.7% at$5.48-1/4 a bushel, near the session low of $5.47-1/4 a bushel - the lowest since Feb. 3. Wheat closed down 1.2% on Monday.

Reporting by Colin Packham; Editing by Amy Caren Daniel

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