GRAINS-Corn to contract lows, soy dips below $9 on weather, trade woes

(Recasts throughout; updates prices, adds quotes; changes byline, dateline, previous SINGAPORE/PARIS) CHICAGO, June 18 (Reuters) - U.S. corn futures fell to life-of-contract lows on Monday and soybeans briefly dipped below $9 a bushel for the first time since 2016 as favorable weather outlooks bolstered yield prospects and trade tensions threatened export demand, analysts said. Chicago Board of Trade soft red winter wheat futures also sagged and K.C. July hard red winter wheat hit a one-month low as the U.S. winter wheat harvest expanded. As of 12:55 p.m. CDT (1755 GMT), CBOT July corn was down 5-1/4 cents at $3.56 per bushel after hitting a contract low at $3.54. July soybeans were up 3 cents at $9.08-1/2 a bushel, rebounding after falling to $8.97-1/4, the lowest spot price on a continuous chart since March 2016. CBOT July wheat was down 10 cents at $4.89-1/2 a bushel while K.C. July wheat was down 18-3/4 cents at $5.01. Corn fell after crop-friendly rains crossed the Midwest over the weekend and forecasts called for more showers this week, offsetting concerns about hot temperatures in the region. "These rains, along with additional rainfall expected in the 6-10-day period, should wipe out most of the remaining soil moisture deficits across the southwestern Midwest, favoring corn and soybean crops," Radiant Solutions said in a note to clients. Ahead of the U.S. Department of Agriculture's weekly crop progress report later on Monday, analysts surveyed by Reuters expected the government to lower slightly its crop ratings for corn and leave soybean ratings unchanged. But condition ratings for both crops are at historically high levels for this time of year. Soybeans bounced after dropping sharply over the last two weeks on crop weather and trade tensions between the United States and China, the world's biggest soy importer. U.S. President Donald Trump last week announced hefty tariffs on $50 billion in Chinese imports, and China hit back, announcing 25 percent tariffs on 659 U.S. goods, including soybeans, starting July 6. "Now that the situation has become serious, many optimistic forecasts of the sales potential of U.S. soybeans in China may prove unjustified though only if the tariffs actually remain in force long enough to affect U.S. exports, which for seasonal reasons will only pick up again in the autumn," Commerzbank said in a note. Wheat tumbled on technical selling and harvest pressure as combines rolled across the southern Plains. "Some people are finding a few more bushels than what they thought they had, (so) there are some sales coming to market," said Ted Seifried, analyst with Zaner Ag Hedge.

CBOT prices as of 12:55 p.m. CDT (1755 GMT):

Last Net Pct Volume change change CBOT wheat WN8 489.25 -10.25 -2.1 64832 CBOT corn CN8 356.00 -5.25 -1.5 141802 CBOT soybeans SN8 909.00 3.50 0.4 106283 CBOT soymeal SMN8 336.30 -2.60 -0.8 34400 CBOT soyoil BON8 29.57 0.07 0.2 38978

NOTE: CBOT July wheat, corn and soybeans shown in cents per bushel, soymeal in dollars per short ton and soyoil in cents per lb.

(Additional reporting by Sybille de La Hamaide in Paris and Naveen Thukral in Singapore Editing by Edmund Blair and Tom Brown)