GRAINS-U.S. new-crop corn near 4-wk high, soy at 2-mth peak

* December corn jumps 2 pct to highest since May 3
    * Expectations of planting delay boost prices
    * November soy at 2-mth high on Midwest rains
    * Wheat faces pressure from favourable crop weather in

 (Adds quotes, detail)
    By Naveen Thukral
    SINGAPORE, May 28 (Reuters) - U.S. corn climbed more than 2
percent on Tuesday to its highest in almost four weeks, while
soybean prices rose to a near two-month peak on expectations of
planting delays across the U.S. Midwest following heavy rains.
    Wheat prices edged lower, falling for the second session on
pressure from favourable crop weather in key exporting
countries. Investors in corn and soybean futures are taking positions ahead of a weekly report on planting progress from the U.S. Department of Agriculture later on Tuesday. Analysts said heavy rains over the weekend had raised the threat of further delays in seeding in the United States, although showers are likely to benefit newly planted corn. "Some reports suggest that the rain is actually going to benefit the corn crop in the Midwest, while others suggest it might have slowed planting more than desired," said Luke Mathews, an analyst at Commonwealth Bank of Australia. "I guess we are going to get a feel of that in tonight's USDA report." Chicago Board of Trade new-crop December corn rose as much as 2.2 percent to $5.48-1/2 a bushel, the highest since May 3. New-crop November soybeans climbed as far as 0.9 percent to their highest since early April at $12.58-3/4 a bushel. July wheat was down 0.2 percent at $6.96-1/4 a bushel. U.S. growers finished planting 71 percent of the corn crop in the week ending May 19, while soybean planting was 24-percent complete. Corn planted after mid-May typically has lower yields due to delayed pollination. The wheat market faced headwinds from favourable crop
weather in top suppliers such as Australia and the Black Sea region. Ukraine's 2013 wheat harvest is likely to rise to 19.3 million tonnes from 15.8 million tonnes in 2012 due to better weather, a senior weather forecaster said. In Australia, the world's second largest exporter, rains across the east coast grain belt over the past week have eased supply concerns. Analysts said exporters from the Black Sea region were making aggressive offers, adding pressure to U.S. prices. "In addition to benign weather in key producing regions, we have seen quite aggressive offers from the Black Sea region," said Mathews. "The offers are significantly cheaper than Australian Canadian, U.S. and European offers." Still, the decline in U.S. wheat futures was limited by large Chinese purchases. China bought as much as 650,000 tonnes of U.S. wheat last week prompted by falling prices. That was the second large-scale purchase of U.S. wheat by the world's top wheat producer this year, bringing its total buying to about 1.5 million tonnes, the China National Grain and Oils Information Centre said. Prices at 0259 GMT Contract Last Change Pct chg MA 30 RSI CBOT wheat 696.75 -0.75 -0.11% 867.63 51 CBOT corn 659.75 2.50 +0.38% 763.90 47 CBOT soy 1484.00 7.75 +0.52% 1580.01 54 CBOT rice $15.75 $0.03 +0.19% $15.49 75 WTI crude $93.69 -$0.46 -0.49% $89.10 42 Currencies Euro/dlr $1.290 $0.061 USD/AUD 0.962 -0.093
Most active contracts Wheat, corn and soy US cents/bushel. Rice: USD per hundredweight RSI 14, exponential (Reporting by Naveen Thukral; Editing by Joseph Radford)

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