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CHICAGO: Chicago Board of Trade wheat futures jumped 3.2% on Tuesday, supported by concerns about rising tensions between Russia and Ukraine as well as cold weather that could threaten the crop in dry parts of the Untied States.

“If there is a problem between Russia and Ukraine it could be very disruptive to the world wheat trade,” said Mark Gold, managing partner at Top Third Ag Marketing.

The most active CBOT wheat contract was on track for its biggest daily percentage gain since early November. Corn and soybean futures were weaker, pressured by forecasts for much-needed rain in key growing areas of Brazil and Argentina. A strong export report from the U.S.

Agriculture Department also helped support wheat. USDA said that weekly export inspections of wheat totalled 369,188 tonnes, up from 234,356 tonnes the prior week and near the high end of market forecasts. Additionally, Turkey’s state grain board TMO provisionally purchased some 335,000 tonnes of wheat in an international tender, traders said. At 11:13 a.m. CST (1613 GMT), Chicago Board of Trade March soft red winter wheat futures were up 23-1/2 cents at $7.65 a bushel. Signs of good export demand also helped to pull corn and soybean futures off session lows.

Weekly soybean inspections totalled 1.721 million tonnes and corn export inspections were reported at 1.204 million tonnes. Both were higher than analysts were expecting.

CBOT March soybeans were down 10-1/4 cents at $13.59-1/2 a bushel, on track for their third straight losing session. The most-active contract hit its lowest since Jan. 3. CBOT March corn was down 1-1/2 cents at $5.94-3/4 a bushel. “In Argentina, the long-awaited rains arrived this weekend and should last for the next few days,” consultancy Agritel said. Some rain is also expected in drought-affected southern Brazil, although showers may also hamper soybean harvesting further north.

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