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Wheat steadies after slide; soybeans ease

By Gus Trompiz and Enrico Dela Cruz

PARIS/MANILA, Sept 20 (Reuters) - Chicago wheat futures edged higher on Tuesday, consolidating after a day-earlier slide on rising Black Sea supplies, while soybeans ticked down as traders assessed mixed Chinese demand. Corn inched up, supported by slower-than-expected U.S. harvest progress. Price moves were limited in keeping with wider markets as investors awaited Wednesday's U.S. Federal Reserve interest rate decision that is among a series of central bank policy announcements due this week.

The most-traded wheat contract on the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) was up 0.5% at $8.35 a bushel by 1202 GMT, after closing 3.4% lower on Monday. CBOT soybeans were down 0.4% at $14.55-1/2 a bushel while corn added 0.3% to $6.80 a bushel.

"Investors are nervous ahead of a hawkish Fed," Peak Trading Research said in a commodities note. "Expect mild position-squaring flows today ahead of tomorrow's fireworks."

After Sweden's central bank raised its rates by more than expected on Tuesday, focus is on the Fed's anticipated hike on Wednesday as policy makers try to contain stubbornly high inflation. A recent rally in the dollar to a 20-year high coupled with increasing supplies from the war-disrupted Black Sea zone had curbed Chicago wheat. Selling on Monday was fuelled by consultancy IKAR's upward revision of its Russian wheat crop forecast to a new record of 99 million tonnes.

The U.S. corn harvest was 7% complete, as of Sunday, the USDA said after Monday's market close, below an average estimate of 10% in a Reuters poll. The U.S. soy harvest was 3% complete, lagging estimates of 5%. Condition ratings for both soybean and corn crops declined, the USDA said.

In a separate announcement on Monday, the USDA confirmed U.S. exporters had sold 136,000 tonnes of the oilseed to China. However, a slow Chinese import pace and a surge in export sales by Argentina were tempering U.S. export sentiment.

Prices at 1202 GMT Last Change Pct End 2021 Ytd Pct Move Move CBOT wheat 835.00 4.50 0.54 770.75 8.34 CBOT corn 680.00 1.75 0.26 593.25 14.62 CBOT soy 1455.50 -5.75 -0.39 1339.25 8.68 Paris wheat 326.50 0.75 0.23 276.75 17.98 Paris maize 323.50 0.00 0.00 226.00 43.14 Paris rape 562.00 -9.50 -1.66 754.00 -25.46 WTI crude oil 85.87 0.14 0.16 75.21 14.17 Euro/dlr 1.00 0.00 -0.41 1.1368 -12.20 Most active contracts - Wheat, corn and soy US cents/bushel, Paris futures in euros per tonne.

(Reporting by Gus Trompiz in Paris and Enrico Dela Cruz in Manila; Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips, Devika Syamnath and Nick Zieminski)

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