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CHICAGO: US wheat futures rose about 2% on Thursday, led by Minneapolis Grain Exchange (MGEX) spring wheat futures, which hit an 8-1/2-year high near $9 a bushel as drought threatened crops in the northern Plains and Canadian Prairies.

Soyabean futures fell on disappointing domestic soya crush data and corn eased after a three-session climb.

As of 1:15 p.m. CDT (1815 GMT), Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) September wheat was up 17-1/2 cents at $6.71-3/4 per bushel.

CBOT August soyabeans were down 6 cents at $14.47 a bushel while new-crop November soyabeans were down 3 cents at $13.80-1/4. Benchmark December corn was down 2-1/2 cents at $5.56-1/4 a bushel.

Wheat futures climbed on forecasts for hot, dry conditions in the northern Plains and Canadian Prairies, threatening production of spring wheat in both countries. MGEX September spring wheat was up 20 cents at $8.92-3/4, after reaching $8.95, the highest on a continuous chart of the spot contract since December 2012.

“Look at Minneapolis wheat; that says it all,” said Tom Fritz, a partner with EFG Group in Chicago.

Soyabean futures sagged, especially the nearby August contract, as monthly soya crushing data from the National Oilseed Processors Association (NOPA) fell below even the lowest in a range of trade expectations. NOPA said its members crushed 152.4 million bushels of soyabeans in June, the smallest monthly crush in two years.

NOPA reported soyaoil stocks fell for a third straight month to 1.537 billion lbs, below most trade estimates. That figure helped support CBOT soyaoil futures, Reilly said.

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