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CHICAGO: U.S. wheat futures extended losses on Wednesday after the U.S. Department of Agriculture projected that domestic farmers planted more acres than traders anticipated. Larger-than-expected USDA estimates for domestic and global wheat inventories added pressure on the market, analysts said, after supply concerns drove futures prices to nine-year highs at the Chicago Board of Trade in November.

The high prices helped to encourage more plantings as bakers and millers worried about tight supplies of high-protein wheat, analysts said. The USDA said U.S. growers planted 34.397 million acres of winter wheat, up 2% from 2021. Analysts surveyed by Reuters expected 34.255 million acres.

The agency pegged domestic wheat ending stocks at 628 million bushels, above the average estimate for 608 million, and the global carryout at 279.95 million tonnes, above expectations for 278.67 million.

“Wheat got a bearish carryover number and a bearish acreage number,” said Ted Seifried, chief agriculture strategist for the Zaner Group. The most-active CBOT wheat contract was down 9 cents at $7.61-1/4 a bushel by 12:30 p.m. CST (1830 GMT) and reached a session low of $7.53-1/2.

Corn and soybean futures advanced at the CBOT after the USDA reduced South American production estimates and pegged world ending stocks below analysts’ expectations. Hot, dry conditions in southern Brazil and Argentina have raised doubts about harvest prospects. Brazilian food supply and statistics agency Conab on Tuesday lowered its 2021/2022 forecast for the country’s soybean and corn production.

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