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Chicago corn hits decade-high as supply worries increase

U.S. grains futures edged higher on Tuesday, with corn prices touching a decade high, as unfavourable U.S. weather and stalled Black Sea exports due to the Ukraine crisis intensified worries over tightening global supplies.

FUNDAMENTALS

* The most-active corn contract on the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) climbed to as high as $8.13-1/2 a bushel, its highest since September 2012, from Monday’s close of $8.07.

* CBOT wheat was up 0.8% at $11.38 a bushel by 0239 GMT, while CBOT soybeans gained 0.6% to $17.25 a bushel.

* U.S. corn planting was 4% complete as of Sunday, below the five-year average of 6%, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said in a report issued after CBOT grain markets closed on Monday. Analysts surveyed by Reuters expected planting to be 5% complete.

* Argentine grains trucking activity has rebounded to near normal levels after a major strike last week, according to transport data and port sources, a relief to exporters in the world’s no. 1 shipper of processed soy and no. 2 for corn.

* The USDA rated 30% of U.S. winter wheat in good to excellent condition, down two percentage points from a week ago. The rating was below an average of analyst expectations and the lowest for this time of year since 1996.

* Approximately 69% of the U.S. winter wheat crop was in an area experiencing drought as of April 12, the government said.

* The USDA’s first estimate of soybean progress for 2022 showed planting as 1% complete, matching the average analyst expectation but behind the five-year average of 2%.

* Traders are at the same time worried that fighting in Ukraine will continue to disrupt exports from the Black Sea region, a key global grain supplier.

* But Russian wheat export prices rose last week amid active supplies from the country’s Black Sea ports, some supplies from the Azov Sea and higher global prices for wheat in Chicago, analysts said.

MARKET NEWS

* Asian shares traded cautiously on Tuesday, with investors weighing China’s measures to cushion an economic slowdown and the prospect of aggressive Federal Reserve monetary policy tightening.

DATA/EVENTS (GMT)

1100 EU Reserve Assets Total March

1230 US Housing Starts Number March

World Bank, IMF release World Economic Outlook and Global Financial Stability Report
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Enrico Dela Cruz in Manila; editing by Uttaresh.V)

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