May 17, 2018 / 2:21 AM / 3 days ago

GRAINS-Soybeans hold steady near six-week low

    SYDNEY, May 17 (Reuters) - U.S. soybean futures took a
breather on Thursday as prices lingered near a six-week low as
fears about Chinese demand for North American supplies pressured
prices.
         
    FUNDAMENTALS  
    * The most active soybean futures on the Chicago Board Of
Trade were little changed at $9.99-1/2 a bushel by 0153
GMT, having closed down 1.9 percent on Wednesday when prices hit
a low of $9.98-3/4 a bushel - the lowest since April 4.
    * The most active corn futures were down 0.1 percent
to $3.99-3/4 a bushel, having closed down 0.8 percent in the
previous session.
    * The most active wheat futures were up 0.6 percent
to$4.97 a bushel, having closed little changed on Wednesday. 
    * Market focused on the outcome of trade talks between
United States and China for signs of thawing tensions that have
slowed demand for North American beans.
    * Australian farmers are planting wheat in some of the
driest soils in years, following on from a severe drought that
cut 2017/18 output in the world's fourth-largest exporter to the
lowest in a decade.
    * Traders were also weighing up yield losses to Brazil's
safrinha, or second corn crop, due to drought against the
potential benefit from a return of rain. 
         
    MARKET NEWS  
    * The dollar stood tall against a basket of currencies on
Thursday, as the euro retreated to a five-month low on concerns
the political developments in Italy could cause wider
disruptions in the common currency bloc.  
    * Oil prices firmed on Thursday, with Brent crude creeping
ever closer to $80 per barrel, a level it has not seen since
November 2014, as supplies tighten while demand remains strong.
  
    * Retail and technology stocks led Wall Street higher on
Wednesday and the small-cap Russell 2000 hit a record peak, even
as a rise in U.S. bond yields to an almost seven-year high
suggested more competition for equities and investors fretted
over geopolitics.  
        
 Grains prices at  0153 GMT
 Contract      Last   Change   Pct chg  Two-day chg    MA 30  RSI
 CBOT wheat  497.00     2.75    +0.56%       +0.71%   499.59   46
 CBOT corn   399.75     0.50    +0.13%       -0.62%   397.77   59
 CBOT soy    999.50    -0.25    -0.03%       -1.89%  1038.65   38
 CBOT rice    12.55   -$0.01    -0.04%       +0.48%   $12.98   49
 WTI crude    71.70    $0.21    +0.29%       +0.55%   $68.37   70
 Currencies                                                      
 Euro/dlr    $1.181   $0.001    +0.05%       -0.20%              
 USD/AUD     0.7529    0.002    +0.20%       +0.78%              
 Most active contracts
 Wheat, corn and soy US cents/bushel. Rice: USD per hundredweight
 RSI 14, exponential
 
 (Reporting by Colin Packham; Editing by Sunil Nair)
  
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