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332996

Corn eases from two-month high; soybeans slip further

By Gus Trompiz and Naveen Thukral

PARIS/SINGAPORE, Aug 30 (Reuters) - Chicago corn futures eased on Tuesday as investors continued to assess crop prospects after a rally to a two-month high linked to disappointing results from a Midwest field tour. Wheat also fell back after reaching a seven-week top on Monday, while soybeans slid for a second session.

The most-active corn contract on the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) was down 1.4% at $6.73-1/2 a bushel by 1053 GMT. The market had climbed to its highest since late June on Monday at $6.83-3/4.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), in a weekly report issued after Monday's close, rated 54% of the U.S. corn crop in good-excellent condition, down from 55% a week earlier and in line with analysts' estimates. That came after advisory service Pro Farmer on Friday estimated the U.S. corn harvest at 13.759 billion bushels, the smallest since 2019 and below the USDA's current forecast of 14.359 billion. The Pro Farmer harvest projection followed a tour of Midwest fields that showed worse than expected effects of hot, dry weather in some zones.

"The market is still absorbing the likely lower U.S. corn crop after last week's Pro Farmer crop tour revealed a much lower yield estimate," said Tobin Gorey, director of agricultural strategy at the Commonwealth Bank of Australia.

Traders are watching weather forecasts for any late rain relief, with expected showers currently tending to miss driest western parts of the Corn Belt.

CBOT soybeans shed 1.4% to $14.18 a bushel, near a one-week low touched earlier in the session. Pro Farmer predicted a U.S. soybean crop of 4.535 billion bushels, slightly above the USDA's August forecast of 4.531 billion bushels. Weekly USDA ratings for the soybean crop were unchanged at 57% good-excellent, above average analyst expectations for 56%.

CBOT wheat fell 1.0% to $8.34-3/4 a bushel, easing from Monday's seven-week peak of $8.49. Increasing grain shipments from Ukraine under a wartime agreement have tempered worries about international wheat supply. Ukraine's agricultural exports could rise to 6 million-6.5 million tonnes in October, double the volume seen in July, the country's agriculture minister said on Monday.

Consultancy Sovecon raised its forecast for Russia's wheat exports in 2022/23 by 200,000 tonnes to 43.1 million tonnes. However, traders remain cautious about Black Sea supplies while fighting between Ukraine and Russia continues, and wheat remains a relatively small part of Ukrainian shipments. Wheat markets were also capped by Monday's larger-than-expected first official forecast of Canada's harvest.

Prices at 1053 GMT Last Change Pct End Ytd Pct Move 2021 Move CBOT wheat 834.75 -8.00 -0.95 770.75 8.30 CBOT corn 673.50 -9.50 -1.39 593.25 13.53 CBOT soy 1418.00 -19.75 -1.37 1339.25 5.88 Paris wheat 333.50 -2.50 -0.74 276.75 20.51 Paris maize 322.75 -1.75 -0.54 226.00 42.81 Paris rape 604.25 -16.75 -2.70 754.00 -19.86 WTI crude oil 95.24 -1.77 -1.82 75.21 26.63 Euro/dlr 1.00 0.00 0.33 1.1368 -11.79 Most active contracts - Wheat, corn and soy US cents/bushel, Paris futures in euros per tonne.

(Reporting by Gus Trompiz in Paris and Naveen Thukral in Singapore; Editing by Rashmi Aich, Subhranshu Sahu and Shailesh Kuber)

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