Corn drops for fourth day on U.S. harvest pressure, strong dollar

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SINGAPORE — Chicago corn futures slid for a fourth consecutive session on Tuesday as a rapidly progressing U.S. harvest and a stronger dollar pressured prices.

Wheat dropped for a second session while soybeans ticked up.

“U.S. dollar strength is impacting prices and we have supplies coming in the market from U.S. harvest,” said Phin Ziebell, an agribusiness economist at National Australia Bank in Melbourne.

A stronger dollar makes greenback-priced commodities expensive for buyers holding other currencies.

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The offshore yuan wallowed near an almost one-month low on Tuesday while the safe-haven dollar and yen stood tall as investors sought shelter from a potential China Evergrande default.

“Overall, prices are in a holding pattern as there are no new supply challenges,” Ziebell said.

The most-active corn contract on the Chicago Board Of Trade (CBOT) lost 0.4% to $5.19-3/4 a bushel by 0513 GMT.

Wheat gave up 0.6% to $6.96-3/4 a bushel while soybeans added 0.1% to $12.63-1/4 a bushel.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) said the corn harvest was 10% complete, up from 4% the previous week and ahead of the five-year average of 9% for this time of year.

The USDA rated 59% of the U.S. corn crop in good-to-excellent condition, up 1 percentage point from the previous week, while soybean ratings improved by 1 point to 58% good-to-excellent.

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Analysts surveyed by Reuters on average had expected no change for either crop.

The volume of corn and soybeans weighed and inspected for export remained well below normal levels last week, USDA data on Monday showed.

Corn export inspections were down 48% from the same week a year ago, while soybean inspections were down 80%.

U.S. grain exports increased last week as shippers along the Louisiana Gulf Coast recovered from flooding and widespread power outages caused by Hurricane Ida’s Aug. 29 landfall, but volumes were much lower than normal, preliminary data showed on Monday.

China’s August soybean imports from Brazil rose 10.9% from the same month last year, customs data showed on Monday, while shipments from the United States fell sharply.

Commodity funds were net sellers of CBOT corn, wheat, soybean, soyoil and soymeal futures contracts on Monday, traders said. (Reporting by Naveen Thukral; Editing by Devika Syamnath)