GRAINS-Soybeans up on firm U.S. exports, wheat takes breather after rally

* Wheat up 3.3 pct this week, biggest gain since late May Soybeans rise on higher than expected weekly exports

(Recasts with details throughout, changes dateline/byline) PARIS/SINGAPORE, July 27 (Reuters) - Soybeans were poised for a second week of gains on Friday on better than expected U.S. weekly exports and expectations of higher demand from Europe, while wheat edged lower, taking a breather after its biggest weekly rise in two months. Wheat was supported by concerns that dry weather in key producing regions across the world was reducing supplies. Corn was little changed. The most active soybean futures on the Chicago Board of Trade were up 0.5 percent to $8.80-1/2 a bushel by 1030 GMT, bringing the weekly gain to 1.8 percent. Wheat shed 0.6 percent to $5.33-1/4 a bushel, rising 3.3 percent this week and extending two-week gains to more than 7 percent. Corn was down 0.1 percent to $3.75-1/2 a bushel, up 1.6 percent this past week. The U.S. Department of Agriculture on Thursday said weekly export sales of soybeans totalled 1.502 million tonnes, topping trade forecasts that ranged from 400,000 to 900,000 tonnes.

"The U.S. soybean price discount (to Brazilian beans) was reduced by $5 a tonne to $56," said Tobin Gorey, director of agricultural strategy at Commonwealth Bank of Australia. "And that suggests at least some players are happy to accumulate U.S. beans at that discount. China's tariffs do make US beans more expensive but only by so much." U.S. President Donald Trump said on Wednesday that Europe had agreed to import more American soybeans, aiding U.S. farmers as the two sides launch talks on cutting other trade barriers, easing the threat of a transatlantic trade war. But many observers in Europe considered the moves as symbolic as the European Union does not impose tariffs on soybean imports, limiting the impact on the futures market. Wheat prices were supported by fears over dry weather in Australia, Europe and Russia. Results from the second day of the Wheat Quality Council's tour of key U.S. spring wheat production areas projected crop yields at 41.1 bushels per acre, below the tour's five-year average of 45.4 bushels. World wheat production is set to fall to a five-year low following significant downgrades to crop prospects in the European Union and Russia, the International Grains Council said on Thursday. The inter-governmental body cut its forecast for world wheat production in 2018/19 by 16 million tonnes to 721 million, the lowest total since the 2013/14 season. "This will see the global wheat market slide increasingly into deficit in 2018/19," Commerzbank said in a note. It stressed, however, that global wheat stocks at the end of the crop year would remain at their second-highest level and that despite drought-related crop outages, wheat would not really be in tight supply on a global level. Commodity funds were net sellers of CBOT soybean, wheat and soyoil contracts on Thursday, traders said. They were net buyers of corn and soymeal contracts.

Prices at 1030 GMT

Last Change Pct End Ytd Move 2017 Pct

Move

CBOT wheat Mar 533.25 -3.25 -0.61 427.00 24.88 CBOT corn Mar 375.50 -0.25 -0.07 350.75 7.06 CBOT soy Mar 880.50 4.50 0.51 951.75 -7.49 Paris wheat Dec 200.25 -0.50 -0.25 162.50 23.23 Paris maize Nov 185.75 0.25 0.13 163.50 13.61 Paris rape Aug 369.50 0.25 0.07 347.75 6.25 WTI crude oil 69.40 -0.21 -0.30 60.42 14.86 Euro/dlr 1.16 0.00 -0.12

Most active contracts - Wheat, corn and soy US cents/bushel, Paris futures in euros per tonne

(Reporting by Naveen Thukral; Editing by Sunil Nair and Jon Boyle)