June 12, 2020 / 4:49 AM / a month ago

GRAINS-Wheat hits near 3-week low on ample supply forecast, set to end week 3.5% lower

* Wheat under pressure as USDA raises production estimate

* Corn set for biggest weekly loss since May 1

* Soybeans on course for biggest weekly slide in three weeks

By Colin Packham

SYDNEY, June 12 (Reuters) - U.S. wheat futures fell to a near three-week low on Friday, as forecasts for ample global supplies set the grain on track for a weekly loss of 3.5%.

Corn fell on forecasts for higher U.S. stocks, while soybeans were set for their first weekly slide in three weeks.

The most active one-month wheat contract on the Chicago Board Of Trade was down 0.5% at $4.96-3/4 a bushel by 0408 GMT, near the session low of $4.96-3/4 a bushel - its lowest since May 20. Wheat closed down 1.4% on Thursday.

It was set for a 3.5% drop for the week, its biggest weekly loss in a month.

Analysts said the U.S. Agriculture Department’s (USDA) forecasts were weighing on wheat.

“The USDA’s crop report has sunk the wheat because it added a hefty amount to their global wheat inventory estimate,” said Tobin Gorey, director of agricultural strategy, Commonwealth Bank of Australia.

The USDA pegged wheat ending stocks at 983 million bushels for 2019/20, 5 million higher than May, and 925 million bushels for 2020/21, 16 million higher than May.

The U.S. winter wheat harvest forecast was raised by 11 million to 1.266 billion bushels, Analysts had been expecting a cut.

The USDA pegged corn ending stocks for the current 2019/20 marketing year at 2.103 billion bushels, 5 million higher than its May projection.

The most active soybean futures were down 0.1% at $8.65 a bushel, after closing flat on Thursday.

Soybeans are down 0.4% for the week, the first weekly loss in three weeks.

The most active corn futures were down 0.1% at $3.29-1/2 a bushel after closing up 1% on Thursday. Corn is down 0.5% for the week, its biggest weekly loss since May 1, on expectations of ample global stockpiles.

The USDA pegged corn ending stocks for the current 2019/20 marketing year at 2.103 billion bushels, 5 million higher than its May projection.

Reporting by Colin Packham; Editing by Rashmi Aich

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