October 25, 2017 / 2:50 AM / in 7 months

GRAINS-Soybeans rise from near 2-week low, rapid U.S. harvest limits gains

    * Rapidly advancing U.S. harvest keeps lid on soybean
    * Corn, wheat take a breather after 2 days of gains

 (Adds details, comment)
    By Naveen Thukral
    Oct 25 (Reuters) - Chicago soybean futures edged higher on
Wednesday on bargain buying after dropping to their lowest in
almost two weeks, but gains were limited by the rapidly
advancing U.S. harvest giving a boost to world supplies.
    Corn and wheat were little changed, holding on to gains made
in the previous two sessions.
    The Chicago Board of Trade most-active soybean contract
 was up 0.2 percent at $9.77-3/4 a bushel by 0244 GMT. The
market closed down 0.5 percent on Tuesday after marking its
lowest since Oct. 12 at $9.72-3/4 a bushel. 
    Corn eased 0.1 percent to $3.52-1/2 a bushel after
gaining 2.4 percent in the last two sessions, and wheat
was down 0.1 percent at $4.37-3/4 a bushel having added 2.8
percent in the past two days. 
    "The focus is turning to demand as U.S. soybean harvest is
nearing completion," said one India-based agricultural
commodities analyst.
    "Chinese demand has been strong but U.S. exports are
lagging. In Brazil we are seeing some improved weather despite
the forecast of dryness due to La Nina weather pattern."
    China's bean imports have a hit record high with 93.5
million tonnes arriving in the 2016/17 crop year that ended in
September, up 12 percent on the prior year. 
    Brazilian farmers have planted 20 percent of the expected
soy area so far in the 2017-18 crop, consultancy AgRural said,
with some producers expressing concern regarding the progress of
work due to a lack of rains in key producing regions.

    Meanwhile the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) said in
its weekly crop progress report that the U.S. soybean harvest
was 70 percent complete, ahead of analyst forecasts of 64
percent. That leaves farmers only 3 percentage points behind
their five-year average.
    The USDA assessed 66 percent of the U.S. corn crop as being
in good-to-excellent condition, which compared with analyst
forecasts of 65 percent.
    The USDA said 75 percent of U.S. winter wheat was planted,
ahead of analyst forecasts of 73 percent.
    In Australia, wheat prices are likely to decline as the
harvest gathers pace in the world's fourth-largest exporter.
    Australia's wheat farmers face a double whammy this year as
dry weather slashes local production at a time when bloated
global inventories are dragging on international prices for the
    Commodity funds were net buyers of CBOT corn and wheat
contracts on Tuesday. They were net sellers of soybeans, soymeal
and soyoil.

 Grains prices at  0244 GMT
 Contract    Last    Change  Pct chg  Two-day chg  MA 30   RSI
 CBOT wheat  437.75  -0.25   -0.06%   -4.21%       465.28  52
 CBOT corn   352.50  -0.25   -0.07%   +0.36%       350.82  56
 CBOT soy    977.75  2.25    +0.23%   +8.10%       898.45  47
 CBOT rice   11.62   $0.01   +0.09%   +17.92%      $10.31  26
 WTI crude   52.45   -$0.02  -0.04%   +1.06%       $51.02  66
 Euro/dlr    $1.176  $0.036  +3.18%   +3.39%               
 USD/AUD     0.7730  0.018   +2.38%   +3.05%               
 Most active contracts
 Wheat, corn and soy US cents/bushel. Rice: USD per
 RSI 14, exponential
 (Reporting by Naveen Thukral; Editing by Kenneth Maxwell)
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