Soybeans edge higher, but set for first monthly loss in ten months

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CANBERRA, March 31 (Reuters) – U.S. soybean futures edged higher as traders readied for a widely watched report, though the oilseed was poised to record its first monthly loss in ten months as expectations for ample global supplies weighed on prices.

FUNDAMENTALS

  • The most active soybean futures on the Chicago Board of Trade were up 0.1% at $13.67-3/4 a bushel by 0221 GMT, having closed down 1.9% on Tuesday when prices hit a Feb. 2 low of $13.64-1/4 a bushel.

  • Soybeans down 2.6% for the month, the first four-week slide since May 2020.

  • Corn on track for its first monthly loss since July 2020.

  • Wheat down 9% for the month, the biggest four-week slide since February 2019.

  • Traders were bracing for Wednesday’s USDA planting intentions and quarterly grain stocks reports, which have a history of rattling the markets.

  • Analysts on average expect the USDA to project expanded plantings of U.S. corn and soybeans in 2021 versus last year, while March 1 stocks of corn, soy and wheat are seen as the lowest in several years.

MARKET NEWS

  • The dollar rose to a fresh one-year high versus the yen and traded near multi-month peaks with other rivals on Wednesday, as investors bet that massive fiscal stimulus and aggressive vaccinations will help the U.S. lead a global pandemic recovery.

  • Oil prices slid more than 1% on Tuesday as the Suez Canal reopened to traffic and the U.S. dollar rallied.

  • Asian stocks were set to open higher on Wednesday, as global financial shares retraced some of their recent losses, driven in part by higher bond yields, and investors awaited a closely watched Chinese factory activity survey. (Reporting by Colin Packham; Editing by Shailesh Kuber)

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