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GRAINS-Soybeans set for 4th straight weekly loss on weak demand, high supplies

Naveen Thukral

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* Soybeans -2.7 pct this week, biggest weekly loss since late Aug

* Slowing soybean demand in China, plentiful supplies weigh

(Adds details, quote) SINGAPORE, May 3 (Reuters) - Chicago soybean futures were on track for a fourth straight weekly loss on Friday as expectations of higher U.S. production and slowing demand in top buyer China dragged prices lower. Corn hovered near its highest in more than a month as concerns about delays in spring planting underpinned the market. The most-active soybean contract on the Chicago Board Of Trade has slipped 2.7 percent so far this week, and was set for the biggest weekly loss since late August. Corn has risen 2.6 percent so far this week, poised for its strongest weekly rally since late November and wheat has gained 0.8 percent this week after suffering three weeks of losses. "The United States is struggling to sell beans and farmers could be planting more this year if they miss the window to plant corn," said Phin Ziebell, agribusiness economist at National Australia Bank. "Global supply is looking strong." The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) on Thursday reported that a net 336,929 tonnes of U.S. soybeans were sold for export last week, below trade estimates for at least 400,000 tonnes. Sales of soymeal also fell short of expectations. Market is awaiting further clarity on the U.S.-China trade negotiations. Officials from the two countries met in Beijing this week and will meet again in Washington next week, aiming to resolve a year-long trade war that has slashed China's purchases of U.S. agricultural products, including soybeans. Spring corn planting across the heart of the U.S. farm belt is off to a slow start due to rainy weather. Forecasts for storms through most of the next two weeks have sparked concerns that more farmers would abandon corn seeding in favour of soybeans, which can be planted later in the spring. Expectations of higher soybean supplies come as deadly spread of African Swine Fever across China is curbing demand for protein-rich animal feed ingredient soymeal. Commodity funds were net buyers of CBOT corn and wheat futures contracts on Thursday, net sellers of soybeans, soymeal and soyoil, traders said.

Grains prices at 0305 GMT

Contract Last Change Pct chg Two-day chg MA 30 RSICBOT wheat 446.00 2.00 +0.45% +4.02% 459.47 43CBOT corn 370.75 0.25 +0.07% +2.28% 370.73 64CBOT soy 843.50 0.25 +0.03% -1.23% 896.02 12CBOT rice 10.68 -$0.03 -0.23% +0.95% $10.83 53WTI crude 61.70 -$0.11 -0.18% -2.99% $62.84

Currencies

Euro/dlr $1.118 $0.003 +0.24% +0.40%USD/AUD 0.6996 -0.004 -0.61% -0.24%

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

(Reporting by Naveen Thukral; Editing by Shreejay Sinha)