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Wheat, corn ease in technical selling as dollar hits 2-month high

CHICAGO - U.S. grain and soybean futures declined for the second straight session on Friday, with wheat prices falling about 1 percent in a technical selloff and as the dollar rose to its highest in two months against a basket of currencies.

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A ladybug crawls across the leaf of a soybean plant near Dustin McGregor's farm in Fairdale, ND. Photo taken August 24, 2015. (Nick Nelson/Agweek)(EMBARGOED UNTIL OCTOBER 18, 2015)

CHICAGO - U.S. grain and soybean futures declined for the second straight session on Friday, with wheat prices falling about 1 percent in a technical selloff and as the dollar rose to its highest in two months against a basket of currencies.

A stronger dollar makes U.S. commodities less attractive in international markets, and corn and wheat already have lost export share to cheaper supplies shipped out of the Black Sea and South America. Another interest rate cut in top global soy buyer China also sparked fears among some commodities investors of reduced imports even as crushers there continued to buy large volumes of soybeans.

"We're trading the move in the dollar, and that's affecting commodities across the board today," said Austin Damiani, analyst at Frontier Futures in Minnesota. "A lot of it, too, is just short-term technical signals."

Chicago Board of Trade December wheat on Thursday tested psychological support of $5 per bushel but failed to surpass that level. Prices were likely to test this week's low of $4.83-1/4, Damiani said.

Wheat for December delivery was down 4 cents at $4.86-3/4 per bushel at 11:00 a.m. CDT (1700 GMT).

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Crop-friendly rains this week for soybeans in Brazil and recently planted wheat in the United States have also weighed on prices while the autumn U.S. corn and soy harvests neared completion. Each commodity was headed for a narrow weekly loss.

CBOT December corn was off 2-1/4 cents to $3.76 per bushel and CBOT November soybeans down 5 cents to $8.93-3/4, with soy on track for its first weekly decline in three weeks.

"There has been some demand from China and that has supported prices, but on the other hand, supply continues to be very favorable, so traders are weighing up those two currents," said Phin Ziebell, agribusiness economist at National Australia Bank.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture on Friday said exporters sold 208,000 tons of soybeans to unknown destinations, and said a sale of 236,000 tons of soybeans previously announced was switched to China from unknown destinations.

Related Topics: CORNCROPSWHEAT
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