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GRAINS-U.S. corn, wheat extend losses; soybeans edge higher

U.S. corn futures extended losses in early trade on Wednesday, hovering near a six-week low, as planting picked up pace in the United States and top buyer China allowed corn imports from Brazil.

* Soybeans edged higher on lower planting and strong export demand, while wheat edged lower as analyst APK-Inform raised its forecasts for Ukraine’s 2022/23 grain crop and exports because of a better-than-expected winter harvest.

* The most-active corn contract on the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) eased 0.42% to $7.68-1/2 a bushel as of 0158 GMT, after falling 1.8% on Tuesday.

* Wheat was down 0.19% at $11.52-1/4 a bushel and soybeans edged 0.16% higher to $16.95-3/4 a bushel.

* The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) said on Monday that 72% of the U.S. corn crop had been seeded as of May 22, near the high end of expectations and up from 49% in the prior week.

* Soybean planting was 50% complete by Sunday, the USDA said, up from 30% a week earlier. The figure was ahead of the average analyst estimate of 49%, but behind the five-year average of 55%.

* China’s customs authority signed an agreement with Brazil to allow imports of Brazilian corn, posing a possible threat to U.S. exports.

* The USDA said spring wheat seeding was 49% complete as on Sunday, below the lowest in a range of trade estimates and well behind the five-year average of 83%.

* Oil prices rose in early trade on Wednesday, boosted by tight supplies and the prospect of rising demand from the upcoming start of the U.S. summer driving season.

* India has allowed duty-free imports of 2 million tonnes each of crude soyoil and crude sunflower oil for the current and the next fiscal year to March 2024.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Rajendra Jadhav; Editing by Rashmi Aich)

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