GRAINS-Soybeans higher on tight U.S. supplies; corn, wheat firm
* Firm cash market lifts July soy; new-crop November trails
* July corn pares gains after filling chart gap from March
* Wheat firm on rain delays but world supplies cap gains
(New throughout; updates prices and adds quotes, changes dateline, previous PARIS/SYDNEY, changes byline) CHICAGO, June 18 (Reuters) - U.S. soybean futures rose on Tuesday on dwindling old-crop stocks and continued strength in the cash market as domestic processors scrambled for supplies, traders said. Corn pared gains on profit-taking after the July contract rose to fill a longstanding gap in its chart. Wheat firmed on short-covering and bargain buying, but rising world supplies and the start of harvesting in the Northern Hemisphere kept a lid on gains. At the Chicago Board of Trade at 11:05 a.m. CDT (1605 GMT), July soybeans were up 8-1/2 cents at $15.21 per bushel. The contract extended its premium over new-crop November soybeans, which rose 4 cents to $12.89-1/2. Some soy processors in Iowa raised their cash bids for soybeans by 15 to 20 cents per bushel on Tuesday. The moves came a day after the National Oilseed Processors Association reported the U.S. soybean crush for May at 122.6 million bushels, up from 120.1 million bushels in April, underscoring strong soybean usage despite scarce supplies. "The balance sheet has been tight and it continues to bring support to this old-crop market," said Mike North, senior risk management adviser at First Capitol Ag in Platteville, Wisconsin. Gains in deferred soy contracts were capped by mostly favorable growing weather in the U.S. Midwest and expectations that farmers would be able to plant the last of their soybeans. The crop was 85 percent seeded by Sunday, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said in a weekly report, behind the five-year average of 91 percent. "The forecast suggests we are going to be able to get it done, obviously not in the time frame we'd hoped. But the nice part about soybeans is they are a much more forgiving crop. They will fare OK," North said.
CORN RETREATS AFTER FILLING CHART GAP CBOT corn firmed in early moves and the spot July contract climbed to $6.77-1/4 per bushel, filling a gap in its chart dating to March 28. On that day, corn prices crashed after the USDA reported higher-than-expected U.S. quarterly stocks. Traders seized the moment to take profits. By 11:10 a.m. (1610 GMT), July corn had retreated to $6.69-1/2, up 1 cent on the day. "We achieved our technical objective and now we are starting to settle back. The July spread to the deferreds got overbought," said Shawn McCambridge, a grains analyst at Jefferies Bache in Chicago. Wheat pared gains as nearby corn backed down, but bargain-buying underpinned the market a day after CBOT July wheat fell to a near one-month low. The contract was up 3-1/2 cents at $6.84 per bushel. Kansas City Board of Trade July hard red winter wheat futures gained about 2 cents over CBOT July as rains stalled the harvest and threatened the quality of hard wheat in the southern Plains. The USDA said the U.S. winter wheat harvest was 11 percent complete by Sunday, behind the five-year average of 25 percent. "There is enough uncertainty out there to keep the market bears cautious," McCambridge said. "But I don't see a lot of upside potential because of the world balance sheet. We are starting to see new-crop supplies work into the market. Within the next couple weeks these pipelines will be replenished," McCambridge said.
Prices at 11:13 a.m. CDT (1613 GMT)
LAST NET PCT YTD CHG CHG CHG CBOT corn 670.25 1.75 0.3% -4.0% CBOT soy 1519.00 6.50 0.4% 7.1% CBOT meal 454.30 5.20 1.2% 8.0% CBOT soyoil 48.90 0.06 0.1% -0.5% CBOT wheat 684.50 4.00 0.6% -12.0% CBOT rice 1616.50 -16.00 -1.0% 8.8% EU wheat 197.00 1.25 0.6% -21.3% US crude 97.91 0.14 0.1% 6.6% Dow Jones 15,289 109 0.7% 16.7% Gold 1364.54 -19.81 -1.4% -18.5% Euro/dollar 1.3402 0.0035 0.3% 1.6% Dollar Index 80.6320 -0.1550 -0.2% 1.1% Baltic Freight 962 37 4.0% 37.6%
(Additional reporting by Gus Trompiz in Paris and Colin Packham in Sydney; Editing by Richard Pullin, Anthony Barker and Peter Galloway)