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PARIS: Chicago soybean futures edged higher on Friday, underpinned by signs that drought-reduced harvest prospects in South America are boosting export demand for US supplies.

Wheat eased as investors saw hope of further diplomacy to avert a major military conflict in Ukraine that could disrupt Black Sea exports. Corn inched down, pressured by falling crude oil but still supported by drought risks to South American production.

The most-active soybean contract on the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) was up 0.5% by 1215 GMT at $16.00 a bushel, as it continued to test the psychological chart threshold. The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) said on Thursday that export sales of soybeans totalled 2.888 million tonnes in the week ended Feb. 10, up from 2.446 million a week earlier. “The 3 million tonnes in US export sales is a demonstration of significant export capacity being lost in the southern Brazil and Argentina area,” Michael Magdovitz, commodity analyst at Rabobank, said.

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