GRAINS-Soybeans face 3rd week of gains as Argentina drought hits supplies

* Soybeans up for 4th session, trade near highest since March

* Poor rains in parts of Argentina seen reducing supplies

(Adds details, quotes) SINGAPORE, Feb 23 (Reuters) - Chicago soybean futures rose for a fourth consecutive session on Friday, with the market set for a third week of gains as a severe drought in parts of Argentina's oilseed producing regions is expected to reduce production. Wheat edged higher but the market is facing its first weekly loss in six weeks on improved weather across U.S. southern Plains and abundant global supplies. The most-active soybean contract on the Chicago Board Of Trade is up 2.3 percent this week, the third straight weekly gain. Soybeans on Thursday hit a high of $10.48-1/4 a bushel - the highest since March. Wheat is down 0.8 percent, the first weekly fall in six weeks and corn is set to end the week little changed, following 1.5 percent gains last week. "Analyst's pre-season estimates of Argentina's soybean crop were around 55 million tonnes. An earlier round of estimate revisions took that down to 50 million tonnes and the latest round of revisions has production down to 47 million tonnes," said Tobin Gorey, director of agricultural strategy at the Commonwealth Bank of Australia. "And that might not be the end of it." Argentina remains the focus for the soybean market, with traders assessing production downgrades by forecasters along with prospects for light rain next week.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture on Thursday predicted U.S. plantings of corn and soybeans at 90 million acres each and wheat slightly above last year's at 46.5 million acres. The estimates were generally in line with analyst expectations.

The government will issue longer-term supply and demand forecasts as well as weekly U.S. export sales results on Friday.

The global wheat market is expected to see the first drawdown in stocks in six seasons in 2018/19 with production forecast to fall, the International Grains Council said on Thursday. The IGC also cut its forecast for 2017/18 global corn production by six million tonnes to 1.048 billion tonnes, partly reflecting diminished crop prospects in Argentina and Brazil. Commodity funds were net buyers of CBOT corn and wheat futures contracts on Thursday and net sellers of soybeans and soymeal futures, traders said.

Grains prices at 0256 GMT

Contract Last Change Pct chg Two-day chg MA 30 RSI CBOT wheat 454.00 2.75 +0.61% +1.51% 443.52 54 CBOT corn 367.25 0.50 +0.14% +0.41% 359.78 65 CBOT soy 1034.00 2.00 +0.19% -0.02% 993.41 80 CBOT rice 12.02 $0.00 +0.00% +1.39% $12.21 43 WTI crude 62.83 $0.06 +0.10% +1.86% $63.18 60


Euro/dlr $1.231 -$0.002 -0.14% +0.24% USD/AUD 0.7832 -0.001 -0.17% +0.37%

Most active contracts Wheat, corn and soy US cents/bushel. Rice: USD per hundredweight RSI 14, exponential

(Reporting by Naveen Thukral; Editing by Biju Dwarakanath)