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GRAINS-Corn snaps 8-session rally on profit taking, overall weakness

SYDNEY, May 23 (Reuters) - U.S. corn futures edged lower for the first time in eight sessions on Thursday on some profit taking and broader weakness across commodities, but fears that North American farmers will be forced to switch to planting soybeans on planting delays capped losses. FUNDAMENTALS * The most active corn futures on the Chicago Board of Trade down 0.1% to $3.94 a bushel by 0128 GMT. Corn closed slightly higher on Wednesday. * The most active wheat futures were steady at $4.78-3/4 a bushel, after closing down 1.2% on Wednesday. * The most active soybean futures were down 0.2% at $8.26-1/2 a bushel, having closed up 0.8% on Wednesday. * The Trump administration is considering direct payments to U.S. farmers of $2 per bushel for soybeans as part of an aid package to offset the trade war with China, Bloomberg reported on Tuesday, an offer that could encourage more soy planting despite record supplies. The USDA, however, released a statement suggesting it was inaccurate. * The U.S. Department of Agriculture said on Monday that a lower-than-expected 49% of the U.S. corn crop has been planted, the slowest pace on record, based on data going back to 1980. Soybeans were 19% planted, also short of market expectations. MARKET NEWS * The yen advanced against its peers on Thursday as persistent U.S.-China trade fears and Brexit concerns fanned risk aversion, lifting the safe-haven Japanese currency. * Oil prices dropped on Thursday, extending falls from the previous session amid surging U.S. crude inventories and weak demand from refineries. * Wall Street's major indexes dipped on Wednesday as inflamed trade tensions between the United States and China weighed on investor sentiment. DATA/EVENTS (GMT) 0600 Germany GDP Detailed QQ SA Q1 0600 Germany GDP Detailed YY NSA Q1 0645 France Business Climate Mfg May 0715 France Markit Mfg Flash PMI May 0730 Germany Markit Mfg Flash PMI May 0800 Germany Ifo Business Climate New May 0800 EU Markit Mfg Flash PMI May 0800 EU Markit Serv Flash PMI May 0800 EU Markit Comp Flash PMI May 1230 US Initial Jobless Claims Weekly 1400 US New Home Sales Units April Grains prices at 0128 GMT Contract Last Change Pct chg Two-day chg MA 30 RSI CBOT wheat 473.00 0.25 +0.05% -1.20% 449.57 70 CBOT corn 394.00 -0.50 -0.13% -0.06% 369.16 81 CBOT soy 826.50 -2.00 -0.24% +0.55% 853.06 49 CBOT rice 11.34 $0.00 +0.00% +0.98% $10.79 90 WTI crude 61.20 -$0.22 -0.36% -2.84% $63.07 36 Currencies Euro/dlr $1.115 $0.000 -0.02% -0.07% USD/AUD 0.6870 -0.001 -0.15% -0.19% Most active contracts Wheat, corn and soy US cents/bushel. Rice: USD per hundredweight RSI 14, exponential (Reporting by Colin Packham; editing by Rashmi Aich)

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