Soybeans up on strong Chinese demand

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    SINGAPORE- Chicago soybean futures rose for a second session on Monday, underpinned by hopes of a Phase 1 trade deal this week between the United States and China – the world’s biggest soybean importer.

    Wheat futures slid, while corn gained more ground.

    China’s Vice Premier Liu He will visit Washington this week to sign the trade deal. The two nations, however, have not yet finalized what exactly will be signed, the White House said on Friday, adding that the translation of the deal was still not complete.

    US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said on Sunday the deal reached on Dec. 13 still calls for China to buy $40 billion-$50 billion worth of US agricultural products annually and a total of $200 billion of US goods over two years.

    The most-active soybean contract on the Chicago Board of Trade was up 0.1 percent at $9.46-3/4 a bushel.

    Corn was up 0.4 percent at $3.87-1/4 a bushel, having gained 0.7 percent in the previous session, while wheat lost 0.3 percent to $5.63 a bushel.

    “The soybean market is being potentially supported by trade deal,” said Phin Ziebell, agribusiness economist at National Australia Bank.

    The US Agriculture Department (USDA) raised its corn and soybean yield estimates, which surprised some traders following unfavorable crop weather last year and a challenging harvest thereafter. The increases were partly offset by fewer harvested acres. – Reuters