GRAINS-Wheat falls 3% as Ukraine shipments resume; corn, soy also sag
(Adds closing U.S. prices, StoneX crop estimates)
By Julie Ingwersen
CHICAGO, Aug 2 (Reuters) - U.S. wheat futures fell more than 3% on Tuesday as the resumption of maritime grain exports from Ukraine tempered global grain supply concerns, and the dollar rallied, making U.S. grains less competitive globally.
Corn and soybean futures also fell on better-than-expected weekly U.S. crop conditions nL1N2ZD1NW. All three markets sagged late in the session and ended near the day's lows.
Chicago Board of Trade September wheat settled down 25-1/2 cents at $7.74-3/4 per bushel after dipping to $7.72-3/4, its lowest in a week.
CBOT December corn ended down 15-1/2 cents at $5.94-1/4 a bushel and November soybeans finished down 19-1/2 cents at $13.86-1/2 a bushel.
Wheat and corn futures declined as the first ship to carry Ukrainian grain nL4N2ZE0EH through the Black Sea since Russia invaded Ukraine was on track to arrive safely in Istanbul on Tuesday night. The ship's departure under a safe-passage deal reached last month raised hopes of further shipments that could help ease a burgeoning global food shortage.
Meanwhile, global wheat export business picked up. Algeria and Jordan bought optional-origin wheat, traders said, while buyers in the Philippines, South Korea, Tunisia and Japan tendered to buy wheat.
"The resumption of Ukraine shipments is being offset by an uptick in global demand," said Terry Reilly, senior analyst with Futures International in Chicago.
Corn and soy futures sagged on improving U.S. production prospects. In a weekly report released after Monday's market close, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) showed an improved rating for soybeans while conditions held steady for corn, countering trade expectations for downgrades after a hot week in the Midwest.
"The crop conditions are kind of dominating the downside in grains," Reilly said.
After Tuesday's CBOT close, commodity brokerage StoneX projected U.S. 2022 corn production at 14.417 billion bushels, with an average yield of 176.0 bushels per acre (bpa). The company estimated this year's U.S. soybean harvest at 4.490 billion bushels, with an average yield of 51.3 bpa.
The figures for both crops fell just below the current projections from the USDA, which is scheduled to release updated estimates on Aug. 12.
(Additional reporting by Gus Trompiz in Paris and Naveen Thukral in Singapore; Editing by Marguerita Choy and Emelia Sithole-Matarise)
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