CHICAGO, Sept. 24 (Xinhua) -- Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) agricultural futures closed mixed on Thursday, with corn and soybean dropping and wheat rising slightly.
The most active corn contract for December delivery fell 5 cents, or 1.36 percent, to close at 3.635 U.S. dollars per bushel. December wheat rose 0.75 cents, or 0.14 percent, to settle at 5.4975 dollars per bushel. November soybean lost 14.5 cents, or 1.43 percent, to close at 10 dollars per bushel.
Corn and soybean futures extended declines while wheat finds modest buying near 50-day moving average. Russian dryness will persist into at least October and the need for soaking rain thereafter will be immediate, Chicago-based research company AgResource noted.
U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) did not report new sales Thursday, the first time since Sept. 8, which validates talk that China's interest in U.S. agricultural products is waning.
USDA statistics show that in the week ending Sept. 17, U.S. exporters sold net 84 million bushels of corn, as against 63 million bushels in the previous week; 117 million bushels of soybeans, as against 90 million bushels; and 13 million bushels of wheat, as against 12 million bushels.
For respective marketing years to date, the United States has exported 890 million bushels of corn, up 147 percent from last year; 1,306 million bushels of soybeans, up 193 percent; and 495 million bushels of wheat, up 7 percent.
Moving forward, whether private firms in China will step in to buy U.S. agricultural products will be key to the markets, AgResource said.
Weather forecast showed that there will be spotty showers across the Eastern Midwest during the first half of next week. Otherwise threats to harvest progress are lacking.
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