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Wheat slides further as Turkish import ban dents demand outlook

Chicago and Paris wheat futures extended losses on Friday to one-month lows as news of an import ban by Turkey weakened the demand outlook and eclipsed concerns over weather damage to crops in Russia.

Corn and soybean futures edged lower, after rebounding in the previous session when news of tighter rules on tax credits in Brazil led to hopes that U.S. exports could benefit.

The most-active wheat contract on the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) Wv1 was down 2.1% at $6.26-1/4 a bushel by 0953 GMT, on track for its eighth consecutive daily fall.

It earlier touched its lowest level since May 6 at $6.25-1/2, nearly $1 dollar below last week’s 10-month peak of $7.20.

On Euronext, September wheat BL2U4 plunged 4.1% in early trade to 241.00 euros per metric ton, its weakest since May 8.

Turkey will halt wheat imports from June 21 until at least Oct. 15 to protect domestic producers, the agriculture ministry said.

“This is clearly going to take a major importer out of the market during the first part of the marketing season,” a European trader said.

Turkey is a key destination for Black Sea wheat, notably Russian wheat, and the absence of Turkish demand could stiffen competition in other export markets.

The demand setback further shifted attention away from weather risks in Russia, where analysts have slashed harvest forecasts in the past month due to frosts and drought.

A statement by Russian Deputy Agriculture Minister Andrei Razin that Moscow would fulfil all of its export commitments also eased concerns about possible Russian export restrictions in response to weather damage.

In other crops, CBOT soybeans Sv1 fell 0.6% to $11.92-1/2 a bushel while corn Cv1 was 0.4% lower at $4.50 a bushel.

Favourable crop conditions in the United States, where farmers have made steady progress in planting corn and soybeans while starting winter wheat harvesting, were also curbing grain prices.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Gus Trompiz in Paris and Peter Hobson in Canberra; Editing by Janane Venkatraman, Mrigank Dhaniwala)

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