January 7, 2019 / 4:13 AM / 3 months ago

GRAINS-Soybeans up for 4th session on U.S.-China trade optimism

    * Soybeans at highest since Dec 12, rise for 4th session
    * Washington-Beijing trade talks boost soybean export hopes

 (Adds details, quotes)
    By Naveen Thukral
    SINGAPORE, Jan 7 (Reuters) - Chicago soybean futures rose
for a fourth consecutive session on Monday to their highest in
nearly three weeks as trade talks between Washington and Beijing
boosted expectations of U.S. soybean exports to China.
    Corn ticked lower while wheat prices were largely unchanged.
    The most-active soybean contract on the Chicago Board Of
Trade was up 0.3 percent at $9.24-1/4 a bushel by 0353
GMT, after climbing to the highest since Dec. 12 at $9.26 a
    Corn was down 0.1 percent at $3.82-3/4 a bushel,
having gained 0.9 percent in the previous session, while wheat
 was unchanged at $5.17 a bushel, having closed up 0.6
percent on Friday. 
    Soybean prices are being buoyed as the United States and top
global soy buyer China hold trade talks this week.
    "Chinese buying is key for U.S. soybean prices but the
market is not likely to rally until Beijing removes import
tariff on U.S. beans," said one Singapore-based trader.
    "The U.S. has a lot of soybeans to sell."
    There was additional support for soybeans stemming from dry
weather in Brazil. 
    Brazilian soy farmers face the prospect of more crop
failures, a grain growers group said on Friday, as a leading
agribusiness consultancy revised its forecast for the country's
crop this year due to a drought that is hurting fields.

    INTL FCStone cut its estimate of Brazil's soybean crop by
about 4 million tonnes to 116.25 million tonnes due to a drought
affecting some areas.
    Wheat draws support from projections for a drop in U.S.
winter wheat plantings compared to a year ago.
    Private analytics firm IEG Vantage, formerly known as
Informa Economics IEG, estimated U.S. winter wheat seedings for
the 2019 harvest at 31.513 million acres, down from the 32.535
million acres the U.S. Department of Agriculture said farmers
planted a year earlier. 
    The U.S. Department of Agriculture delayed several major
domestic and world crop reports because of the two-week-old
partial government shutdown, the agency said on Friday.
    New release dates for the monthly World Agricultural Supply
and Demand Estimates report and other data originally scheduled
for Friday, Jan. 11, will be set once government funding is
restored, USDA said.
    U.S. soybean crushing in November likely totalled 5.309
million short tons, or 177.0 million bushels, according to the
average forecast of seven analysts surveyed by Reuters ahead of
a monthly U.S. Department of Agriculture report.
    If realized, the average trade estimate would be down from a
182.9 million-bushel crush in October, but above the November
2017 crush of 173.3 million bushels.
 Grains prices at  0353 GMT
 Contract    Last    Change  Pct chg  Two-day chg  MA 30   RSI
 CBOT wheat  517.00  0.00    +0.00%   +2.02%       517.80  54
 CBOT corn   382.75  -0.25   -0.07%   +1.86%       378.69  66
 CBOT soy    924.25  2.75    +0.30%   +1.90%       908.58  72
 CBOT rice   10.50   $0.02   +0.19%   +1.45%       $10.68  41
 WTI crude   48.60   $0.64   +1.33%   +3.21%       $49.20  
 Euro/dlr    $1.142  $0.003  +0.25%   +0.26%               
 USD/AUD     0.7134  0.002   +0.31%   +1.84%               
 Most active contracts
 Wheat, corn and soy US cents/bushel. Rice: USD per
 RSI 14, exponential

 (Reporting by Naveen Thukral; Editing by Sunil Nair)
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