February 7, 2020 / 1:53 AM / 14 days ago

GRAINS-Soybeans up for 5th session, gains capped by slowing Chinese purchases

SINGAPORE, Feb 7 (Reuters) - Chicago soybean futures rose for a fifth consecutive session on Friday and were on course to snap three straight weekly losses, although slowing Chinese demand amid a coronavirus outbreak kept a lid on prices.

Corn ticked up after two consecutive sessions of losses, while wheat was largely unchanged.

FUNDAMENTALS

* The most-active soybean contract on the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) rose 0.4% to $8.84-1/4 a bushel, as of 0145 GMT. The contract has gained 1.3% this week after losing 7.8% in the last three weeks.

* Corn is down 1.5% this week, set for the second straight weekly loss, while wheat is up 0.5% for the week.

* U.S. export sales of soybeans to China fell to their lowest in nearly five months in the week ended Jan. 30, a weekly U.S. Agriculture Department report showed on Thursday, amid concerns that the coronavirus outbreak would dent demand from the world’s top buyer.

* The export sales to China totalled just 31,523 tonnes in the week ended Jan. 30, according to the USDA report. That was the lowest since the week ended Sept. 5, 2019.

* China on Thursday said it would halve additional tariffs levied against 1,717 U.S. goods last year, following the signing of a Phase 1 deal that defused a bruising trade war between the world’s two largest economies.

* While the announcement reciprocates the U.S. commitment under the deal, it is also seen by analysts as a move by Beijing to boost confidence amid the virus outbreak that has disrupted businesses and hit investor sentiment.

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

MARKET NEWS

* World equity markets rallied for a fourth day on Thursday, with key stock indexes touching fresh peaks, as news that China plans to cut tariffs in half on some U.S. goods buoyed risk sentiment and pushed safe-haven currencies lower.

DATA/EVENTS AHEAD (GMT) 0700 Germany Industrial Output MM Dec 0745 France Reserve Assets Total Jan 0830 UK Halifax House Prices MM Jan 1030 Russia Central bank key rate Feb 1200 Brazil IPCA Inflation Index MM Jan 1330 US Non-farm Payrolls Jan 1330 US Unemployment Rate Jan 1330 US Average Earnings YY Jan 2000 US Consumer Credit Dec — China Exports, Imports YY Jan — China Trade Balance USD Jan (Reporting by Naveen Thukral)

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