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CHICAGO: Chicago soybeans and corn eased on Monday on renewed calls for rainfall in parts of South America that could refresh parched crops as Argentina and Southern Brazil near harvest.

CBOT wheat followed the grain complex lower, though renewed tensions between Russia and Ukraine threatened Black Sea exports, underpinning US wheat.

Chicago Board of Trade most-active soybeans fell 20 cents to $15.63 a bushel at 11:07 a.m. (1707 GMT).

Corn dropped 4 cents to 6.47 a bushel, while wheat lost 8-1/4 cents to $7.89-1/2 a bushel.

Rain over the weekend in parts of South America pressured CBOT soybean and corn futures, though wet conditions hampered harvest in northern and central Brazil.

“The driest areas are in Southern Brazil,” said Kristi Van Ahn-Kjeseth, chief operating officer at consulting firm Van Ahn and Company. “It’s going to be a while before you get down there for harvesting, and see what kind of crop failure you have.”

Safras & Mercado became the latest private forecaster in Brazil to cut its Brazilian soybean crop estimate following drought.

Brazil’s farmers had harvested 24% of the soy area through the end of last week, according to data from agribusiness consultancy AgRural.

Meanwhile, strong export inspections from the US Department of Agriculture underpinned soybean and corn.

US exporters readied 1.15 million tonnes of soybeans for shipment the week ended Feb. 10, down 6.9% from the week prior but in line with analysts’ expectations.

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