June 12, 2020 / 2:17 AM / a month ago

GRAINS-Wheat hits near 3-week low on ample supply forecast, set to end week 3.5% lower

SYDNEY, June 12 (Reuters) - U.S. wheat futures fell to a near three-week low on Friday, as forecasts for ample global supplies pushed the grain on track for a weekly loss of 3.5%.

FUNDAMENTALS

* The most active one-month wheat contract on the Chicago Board Of Trade was down 0.5% at $4.97 a bushel by 0151 GMT, its lowest since May 20. It was set for a 3.5% drop for the week, its biggest weekly loss in a month.

* The most active soybean contract was set for about 0.5% dip for the week, its first weekly loss in three.

* The most active corn futures were down 0.5% for the week, the first weekly loss in three weeks.

* In its monthly supply and demand estimate report, the U.S. Agriculture Department (USDA) pegged wheat ending stocks at 983 million bushels for 2019/20, 5 million higher than May, and 925 million bushels for 2020/21, 16 million higher than May.

* The U.S. winter wheat harvest forecast was raised by 11 million to 1.266 billion bushels, while analysts had been expecting a cut.

* Leading Russian consultancies revised forecasts for this year’s Russian wheat harvest, tempering concern about a dry spring.

* The USDA pegged corn ending stocks for the current 2019/20 marketing year at 2.103 billion bushels, 5 million higher than its May projection.

MARKET NEWS

* The safe-haven Swiss franc and the yen held on to gains on Friday while the U.S. dollar also held firm against riskier currencies after global stock prices tumbled.

* Oil prices slid early on Friday, extending heavy overnight losses on a surge in U.S. coronavirus cases this week that has raised the prospect of a second wave of the outbreak.

* Wall Street plummeted on Thursday as investors reacted to renewed fears of a pandemic resurgence and dour economic forecasts from the U.S. Federal Reserve. (Reporting by Colin Packham; Editing by Rashmi Aich)

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