GRAINS-Corn prices firm, near 4-wk high as planting slows

SYDNEY, May 29 (Reuters) - U.S. new-crop corn rose for the
fifth session on Wednesday and was near a four-week high after
the pace of U.S. planting slowed last week due to wet weather.
    New-crop soybeans fell even as the U.S. Department of
Agriculture confirmed oilseed planting marked its slowest pace
in 17 years last week.
         
    FUNDAMENTALS  
    * Chicago Board of Trade December corn, the most
actively traded contract, rose 0.18 percent to $5.52 a bushel,
having gained 2.7 percent in the previous session when the grain
hit a near four-week high of $5.54-1/4 a bushel.
	
* Spot corn fell 0.15 percent to $6.65-1/2 a bushel, after closing up 1.41 percent on Tuesday. * November soybeans fell 0.33 percent to $12.83-3/4 a bushel, having ended up 3.23 percent on Tuesday. * July soybeans were little changed at $15.08-1/2 a bushel. They firmed 2.24 percent on Tuesday. * July wheat was little changed at $6.93-1/4 a bushel, having closed down 0.54 percent on Tuesday. * U.S. farmers slowed their planting pace during the past week due to rainy conditions that delayed the tail end of corn seeding and pushed soybean planting to its slowest in 17 years, the USDA said in its weekly crop progress report on Tuesday. * The USDA said that corn planting was 86 percent complete as of May 26, up 15 percentage points from a week earlier. * The corn progress was down from 99 percent a year ago and behind the five-year average of 90 percent. * Rain over the weekend and this week will drag out late- season plantings of corn and soybeans in the United States, an agricultural meteorologist said on Tuesday. * Corn planted after mid-May typically has lower yields due to delayed pollination. * Tightness in corn and soy stockpiles also supported prices. * Soy was also buoyed by another sale of U.S. soybeans to
China, the world's top buyer of the oilseed. * Wheat dropped as the wetter U.S. weather was viewed as favorable to the winter crop. MARKET NEWS * The dollar rebounded against the euro and yen on Tuesday on robust U.S. economic data. * Brent crude gained more than $1 on Tuesday as U.S. consumer optimism and signs of easier monetary policy from central banks pushed stock markets higher. DATA/EVENTS (GMT) 0755 Germany Unemployment rate 0800 Euro zone M3 money supply 0800 Italy Business confidence 1145 U.S. ICSC weekly chain store sales 1200 Germany Inflation 1255 U.S. Redbook weekly retail sales 2030 U.S. API weekly crude stocks Grains prices at 0023 GMT Contract Last Change Pct chg Two-day chg MA 30 RSI CBOT wheat 693.25 -0.50 -0.07% -0.61% 703.33 46 CBOT corn 665.50 -1.00 -0.15% +1.26% 644.13 52 CBOT soy 1508.50 -0.75 -0.05% +2.18% 1412.89 60 CBOT rice $15.32 $0.00 +0.00% -2.51% $15.32 49 WTI crude $94.74 -$0.27 -0.28% +0.63% $93.60 51 Currencies Euro/dlr $1.285 -$0.001 -0.07% -0.65% USD/AUD 0.957 -0.005 -0.50% -0.67% Most active contracts Wheat, corn and soy US cents/bushel. Rice: USD per hundredweight RSI 14, exponential (Reporting by Colin Packham; Editing by Joseph Radford)

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