* U.S. wheat drops for fourth day in a row
* Corn, soybeans pressured by planting progress (Updates with closing prices, adds new analyst quote)
By Mark Weinraub
CHICAGO, May 12 (Reuters) – U.S. wheat futures fell 1 percent on Monday, their fourth straight day of declines, due to a U.S. government forecast for ample global supplies and crop-boosting rains in the key production areas, traders said.
Corn and soybeans also eased, with corn hitting a one-week low, as the pace of planting picked up across the U.S. Midwest.
“I think we are all expecting a pretty good jump on the planting progress coming out this afternoon,” said Jason Britt, president of Central States Commodities. “The markets are suffering a little bit from that.”
Wheat futures, facing additional pressure from a round of technical selling, hit their lowest since May 1. Wheat has fallen 3.3 percent during its current losing streak.
Chicago Board of Trade May soft red winter wheat for July delivery settled down 7-1/2 cents at $7.15 a bushel.
On Friday, the U.S. Agriculture Department pegged global wheat production for 2014/15 at 697 million tonnes and forecast that world stocks would rise by almost 1 million tonnes to 187.4 million tonnes by the end of the crop year.
“We are seeing big losses in the wheat market in response to the USDA report,” said Luke Mathews, commodities strategist at Commonwealth Bank of Australia. “The key thing is the USDA is forecasting comfortable stocks for 2014/15 season and if that comes true, it implies downward pressure on prices.”
Parts of Kansas, the top U.S. wheat state, got beneficial rains in the last day, with some stations in central Kansas reporting more than 2 inches (5 cm). Western portions of Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas remained dry and will not see much moisture this week, said Don Keeney, agricultural meteorologist at MDA Weather Services.
K.C. hard red winter wheat futures, which track the crop grown in the U.S. Plains were 4-1/4 cents lower at $8.24-1/2 a bushel.
CBOT July corn fell 8 cents to $4.99-1/2 a bushel while CBOT July soybeans dropped 21-3/4 cents to $14.65-1/4 a bushel. July soybeans settled below their 30-day moving average, a bearish sign.
A USDA report on Monday afternoon was expected to show that U.S. farmers picked up the pace of planting in the past week due to improving field conditions for seeding.
Analysts were expecting the government’s weekly crop progress report to show that corn planting was 55 percent complete as of May 11, up from 28 percent a week ago. Soybean planting was forecast to be 17 percent finished.
Prices at 1:42 p.m. CDT (1842 GMT) LAST NET PCT YTD CHG CHG CHG CBOT corn 499.50 -8.25 -1.6% 18.4% CBOT soy 1465.25 -21.75 -1.5% 11.6% CBOT meal 478.20 -9.10 -1.9% 9.3% CBOT soyoil 40.98 -0.20 -0.5% 5.6% CBOT wheat 715.00 -7.50 -1.0% 18.1% CBOT rice 1532.00 -11.00 -0.7% -1.2% EU wheat 201.50 -5.75 -2.8% -3.6% US crude 100.61 0.62 0.6% 2.2% Dow Jones 16,697 114 0.7% 0.7% Gold 1295.68 6.85 0.5% 7.5% Euro/dollar 1.3756 -0.0001 0.0% 0.8% Dollar Index 79.9050 0.0020 0.0% -0.2%Baltic Freight 987 -10 -1.0% -56.7% In U.S. cents, benchmark contracts, except EU wheat (euros) and soymeal (dollars). CBOT wheat, corn and soybeans per bushel, rice per hundredweight, soymeal per ton and soyoil per lb. (Additional reporting by Julie Ingwersen in Chicago and Naveen Thukral in Singapore; Editing by Marguerita Choy)