(Adds U.S. trading, commodities analyst quote; changes byline,
dateline, pvs SINGAPORE/PARIS)
By Mark Weinraub
CHICAGO Dec 15 U.S. soybean futures rose on
Thursday, turning higher after testing key technical support
levels, traders said.
Corn and wheat futures weakened on a mild round of
profit-taking. Wheat had risen for the previous five days while
corn was coming off a four session winning streak.
Strong soybean exports, which highlighted the need for a big
harvest in South American suppliers Brazil and Argentina, also
lent support to the soy market, which had fallen for three days
in a row.
"Fundamentally, the export sales have been incredibly strong
and lasting for longer than I thought they would for this time
of the year," said Mark Schultz, chief analyst at Northstar
Commodity Investment Company.
Weather conditions in both Brazil and Argentina have been
beneficial for the crop but the robust overseas demand
underscores that any concerns about conditions ahead of harvest
will support strong gains in soybeans, Schultz added.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture on Thursday reported that
weekly soybean export sales for 2016/17 delivery rose to 2.008
million tonnes, up from 1.462 million a week ago and above trade
forecasts for 1.1 million to 1.5 million tonnes.
USDA also reported a flash sale of 132,000 tonnes of
soybeans to China.
At 10:22 a.m. CST (1622 GMT), Chicago Board of Trade January
soybean futures were up 10 cents at $10.33-3/4 a bushel. The
contract found support from early weakness at its 30-day moving
average, a level it has not traded below since Nov. 18.
CBOT March wheat was down 6 cents at $4.12 a bushel
and CBOT March corn shed 2-1/4 cents to $3.59-3/4 a
There was additional pressure on the grains stemming from a
stronger dollar which makes commodities priced in the greenback
expensive for foreign buyers holding other currencies.
The dollar rose to a 14-year peak against a basket of major
currencies on anticipation of a more hawkish Federal Reserve.
(Reporting by Mark Weinraub in Chicago, Naveen Thukral in
Singapore and Sybille de La Hamaide in Paris; Editing by David
Evans and Grant McCool)