U.S. wheat futures fell on Wednesday, dragged lower by a firmer dollar that threatened to make U.S. supplies less competitive on the export market, traders said.
Corn futures steadied after sinking to their lowest in two months early in the day, with bearish harvest expectations limiting any rally attempts.
"Corn recovered from early losses on profit taking as we get closer to Friday’s USDA report," Charlie Sernatinger, global head of grain futures at ED&F Man Capital, said in a note to clients.
The soybean market ended higher after falling for six of the previous eight sessions.
Traders noted position-squaring ahead of the U.S. Agriculture Department's monthly World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) report on Friday.
"The market has pretty much convinced itself that the USDA will publish larger U.S. corn crop estimates," said Tobin Gorey, director of agricultural strategy at Commonwealth Bank of Australia.
Chicago Board of Trade December corn futures ended down 1/4 cent at $5.10-1/2 a bushel.
On Tuesday afternoon, the USDA estimated 59% of the U.S. corn crop to be in good-to-excellent condition, down 1 percentage point.
CBOT November soybeans finished 3-1/4 cents higher at $12.80-1/4 a bushel.
CBOT December soft red winter wheat shed 10-1/4 cents to $7.09-1/2 a bushel. MGEX December spring wheat notched the biggest losses in the wheat complex, dropping 13-3/4 cents to $8.94-1/2 a bushel.
Spring wheat faced additional pressure as farmers neared the end of harvest in the northern U.S. Plains earlier than usual. USDA said 95% of the crop had been harvested, up from 80% in early September 2020 and ahead of the five-year average of 83%.
Egypt's state grains buyer said on Wednesday that it bought 300,000 tonnes of wheat to be sourced from Russia and Ukraine in an international tender. There were no offers for U.S. wheat in the tender.
News by Reuters edited by Donna Ahern, Checkout. For more supply chain stories click here. Click subscribe to sign up for the Checkout print edition.