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Supply Chain

Wheat Rebounds On Black Sea Supply Worries; Corn, Soybeans Rise 1%

Chicago wheat rose on Monday for a second session in three, as the Russia-Ukraine war and dry weather in parts of the US grain belt raised concerns over global supplies.

Corn and soybeans climbed about 1% each.

"Wheat prices have declined since hitting their peak earlier in March, which is generating some buying interest," said one Singapore-based grains trader.

"But the war is not anywhere close to be getting over and supplies from the Black Sea region remain an issue."

High Prices 

The agricultural markets will likely consolidate at high prices until it becomes clearer how long the Ukraine conflict may last.

Grain prices have been volatile since Russia's invasion of Ukraine late last month as importers are heavily reliant on supplies shipped from the Black Sea.

Russian and Ukrainian forces fought for the Ukrainian port city of Mariupol on Sunday, where residents are trapped with little food, water and power, while Ukraine's president appealed to Israel for help in pushing back Russia's assault.

A World Food Programme official said on Friday food supply chains in Ukraine were collapsing, with key infrastructure such as bridges and trains destroyed by bombs and many grocery stores and warehouses empty.

Traders are also keeping an eye on dry weather in the US Plains and waiting for the US Department of Agriculture to issue reports on March 31 on U.S. planting intentions and grain stocks.

Lower Rainfall

In Argentina, farmers could be hit by a third straight La Nina weather phenomenon, the Rosario grains exchange said, a potential blow for the upcoming 2022/23 season. The climate pattern generally brings lower rainfall in key farming regions.

However, some 92% of French soft wheat crops were in good or excellent condition by 14 March, unchanged from a week earlier and above a year-ago rating of 87%, farm office FranceAgriMer said on Friday.

Large speculators cut their net long position in CBOT corn futures in the week to 15 March, regulatory data released on Friday showed.

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission's weekly commitments of traders report also showed that noncommercial traders, a category that includes hedge funds, increased their net short position in CBOT wheat and cut their net long position in soybeans.

China's soybean imports from Brazil in the first two months of 2022 rose significantly from the corresponding period last year, customs data showed on Sunday.

The world's top buyer of soybeans, China brought in 3.51 million tonnes of the oilseed from Brazil, up 241% from 1.03 million tonnes in the previous year.

News by Reuters, edited by Donna Ahern, Checkout. For more retail stories, click here. Click subscribe to sign up for the Checkout print edition.

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