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CANBERRA: US wheat futures edged lower on Tuesday, though concerns about global supplies kept the grain near a nine-year high.

Corn edged lower as the United States moved to tap emergency supplies, while soybeans firmed.

The most-active wheat futures on the Chicago Board Of Trade were down 0.1% at $8.56-1/2 a bushel, as of 0500 GMT, after gaining 2.8% on Monday when prices hit a December 2012 high of $8.59-1/2 a bushel.

Traders said wheat was under pressure from corn, but market fundamentals remained bullish.

"There are concerns about supplies all over the world, and the US Department of Agriculture condition report has added to those," said a Melbourne-based grains trader who declined to be named as he is not authorised to talk to the media.

The USDA said 44% of the US winter wheat crop is in a good to excellent condition. Analysts on average had expected the USDA to rate 46% of the crop in good to excellent condition, unchanged from a week earlier.

Shipments from Russia, the world's largest exporter, are down 34% this season due to a smaller crop and rising export taxes.

Heavy rains, meanwhile, stalled harvesting in Australia and threatened crop quality, while flooding in western Canada has disrupted exports when global demand for wheat has risen.

The most-active soybean futures were up 0.2% at $12.76-1/4 a bushel, having closed 0.9% higher on Monday.

Both corn and soybean harvests were 95% complete as of Nov. 21, 1 percentage point below the average of estimates given in a Reuters poll of 11 market analysts.

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