December 18, 2019 / 3:42 AM / a month ago

GRAINS-Wheat falls on profit booking; soybeans snap 4-day rally

* Hopes of increased North American supply demand caps wheat losses

* U.S.-China deal continues to buoy soybeans

* Corn little changed

By Colin Packham

SYDNEY, Dec 18 (Reuters) - U.S. wheat futures fell 1% on Wednesday, as traders booked profits, but hopes of rise in demand for North American supplies and Argentina’s plans to raise export taxes on the grain kept losses in check.

Soybeans took a breather after four sessions of gains, while corn was little changed.

The most active wheat futures on the Chicago Board Of Trade were down 0.9% at $5.51-1/4 a bushel by 0304 GMT, after closing 0.5% higher on Tuesday, when prices hovered close to a June 27 high.

Despite the fall, analysts said wheat continues to draw support from moves in Argentina to increase export taxes on two agricultural products, which is expected to boost demand for U.S. supplies.

“At least a few traders are scrambling for substitute, non-Argentinian, wheat,” said Tobin Gorey, director of agricultural strategy, Commonwealth Bank of Australia.

Economy Minister Martin Guzman said on Tuesday Argentina wants to raise export taxes on wheat and corn to 15% from 12%.

The bill, dubbed by the government the “Social Solidarity and Production Reactivation” project, would also raise the tariff cap on soybean exports to 33% from 30%.

The most active corn futures were little changed at$3.89-3/4 a bushel, having gained 1.2% in the previous session.

The most active soybean futures were down 0.1% at $9.28-1/4 a bushel, having firmed 0.7% on Tuesday when prices hit a Nov. 8 high of $9.31 a bushel.

Soybeans have been buoyed in recent days by the U.S.-China trade deal, reduces some U.S. tariffs in exchange for what Washington said would be a big jump in Chinese purchases of American farm products and other goods.

Reporting by Colin Packham; Editing by Rashmi Aich

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