GRAINS-U.S. soy prices rise on China demand, soft dollar
* Chinese demand underpins U.S. soybean futures
* Ukraine cuts forecast for winter grain area loss
* Canada wheat exports threatened by possible rail strike
(Adds quotes, details)
LONDON/SINGAPORE, Oct 17 (Reuters) - Soybean futures on the Chicago Board of Trade rose on Thursday boosted by strong demand from China while a softer dollar was also supportive with corn and wheat posting gains.
"We are looking at very good soybean production prospects coming out of Brazil but at the same time we are hearing talk that China has been purchasing volumes of U.S. beans in recent days," said Luke Mathews, a commodities strategist at the Commonwealth Bank of Australia.
CBOT front-month soybeans rose 0.2 percent to $12.79-1/4 a bushel by 1108 GMT, adding to Wednesday's 0.8 percent gain.
China's soybean imports are likely to rebound in the coming months after a sharp decline in September.
China, which accounts for 60 percent of soybeans traded in the world, has been facing tight supplies of protein-rich feed ingredient soybean meal after an unexpected recovery in demand.
China imported 4.70 million tonnes of soybeans in September, down 26.2 percent from 6.37 million tonnes in August, according to data from the General Administration of Customs of China.
A weaker dollar also provided some support. The dollar fell against a basket of currencies on Thursday as investors marked a deal to end the U.S. debt stalemate by focusing on the economic impact of the government shutdown.
The spot-month CBOT wheat contract rose 0.7 percent to $6.86-1/2 a bushel.
POSSIBLE RAIL STRIKE IN CANADA
Dealers were keeping a close watch on Canada where a possible railway strike could limit short-term availability from the key wheat exporter.
"The outstanding wheat crop in Canada is likely to help compensate for losses in other countries such as China, the Black Sea region and Brazil," Commerzbank said in a market note.
"In the short term, however, the increased supply from Canada may not be available due to the threat of a strike by Canadian rail workers."
November milling wheat in Paris rose 0.25 percent to 198.75 euros a tonne.
Dealers said gains were capped by more favourable weather for plantings in the Black Sea region.
Ukraine will only lose up to 500,000 hectares of winter grain sowings for 2014, sharply down from its previous estimate of 1.5 million hectares, Agriculture Minister Mykola Prysyazhnyuk said on Thursday.
In the United States, minimal interruptions to the corn and soybean harvest are expected over the next two weeks with mostly dry weather forecast, an agricultural meteorologist said on Wednesday.
Commodity Weather Group said the drier-than-normal pattern should result in at least 10 of the next 15 days being suitable for harvest, allowing the harvest to accelerate.
CBOT December corn futures rose 0.6 percent to $4.45-1/4 a bushel.
(Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman and Keiron Henderson)