GRAINS-Soy eases from 2-month top; wheat, corn also lower

Nigel Hunt
Tuesday, 26 Nov 2013 | 7:26 AM ET

* Soybeans dip from 2-month top on profit-taking

* European Union wheat crops developing well

* U.S. corn harvest now 95 percent complete

(Adds quotes, updates prices, previous Singapore)

LONDON, Nov 26 (Reuters) - U.S. soybean futures fell on Tuesday in a modest setback after strong export demand had lifted prices to a two-month high in the previous session, while wheat and corn prices also eased.

Chicago Board Of Trade January soybeans dipped 0.2 percent to $13.26 a bushel by 1200 GMT but remained within striking distance of Monday's high of $13.34-1/2.

"Nearby beans have moved around 60 cents higher in the last three sessions, so it is not surprising to see some profit being taken," said Brett Cooper, senior markets manager at INTL FCStone Australia.

"The issue with soybeans is that the U.S. needs to control its export pace until the South American harvest."

The soybean market has been supported by strong demand, mainly from China, for the freshly harvested U.S. crop. China is the world's top soybean importer.

Exporters sold 120,000 tonnes of U.S. soybeans to unknown destinations for 2014/15 delivery, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said on Monday.

That was on top of sales confirmed by the USDA on Friday of 115,000 tonnes of U.S. soybeans to China. It also had reported sales for the week to Thursday that were well above expectations at nearly 1.4 million tonnes.

"Although production rebounded significantly in the U.S., strong demand and minimal competition in South America has kept prices well bid," Deutsche Bank said in a market note.


Wheat prices were lower, retreating from the prior session's two-week high.

CBOT December wheat was off 0.65 percent at $6.48-1/4 a bushel. The front month had risen to a two-week high of $6.55 on Monday, supported partly by forecasts for colder weather in the U.S. southern plains.

The USDA, in its weekly crop report, said 62 percent of the wheat crop was in good to excellent condition, down from 63 percent a week ago, in line with expectations.

In the European Union, dealers said that development had been generally favourable.

"So far, plants have been able to develop well and are ready to face the winter," Commerzbank said in a market note.

January milling wheat in Paris fell 0.4 percent to 206.50 euros ($280) a tonne.

CBOT corn futures were also lower, with December off 1.0 percent at $4.20-1/2 a bushel.

The U.S. corn harvest was 95 percent complete by Sunday, the USDA said, ahead of the five-year average of 91 percent and in line with trade expectations. ($1 = 0.7404 euros)

(Additional reporting by Naveen Thukral in Singapore; editing by Jane Baird)