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GRAIN HIGHLIGHTS : Top Stories of the Day

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03/20/2017 | 10:44pm CEST

TOP STORIES:

Wheat Falls to Seven-Week Low on Wet Weather

CHICAGO--Wheat futures fell to a seven-week low as traders worried that improving U.S. weather prospects would exacerbate a glut and keep prices down.

May wheat futures dropped 1.4% to $4.30 1/4 a bushel during Monday's session at the Chicago Board of Trade, undoing gains made overnight to fall to the lowest close since Jan. 30.

BASF Eyes Seed Opportunities as Rivals Merge -- Market Talk

12:47 ET - Among the world's "big six" seed and pesticide suppliers, Germany's BASF has the smallest presence in crop seeds, sticking mainly to developing biotech genes and coating seeds with beneficial microbes and chemicals. But that could change as the sector's biggest players merge, BASF's crop protection president Markus Heldt says. While BASF could scoop up pesticide properties that are divested in those deals, Heldt says in an interview that "we are also looking at seed assets." Any push into seeds would be a new direction for BASF's agriculture division, but a rare opportunity to purchase significant businesses as major competitors like Monsanto (>> Monsanto Company) and Bayer (>> Bayer AG (ADR)) tie up. (jacob.bunge@wsj.com; @jacobbunge)

STORIES OF INTEREST:

Sonny Perdue Would Hold Sway Over Food Assistance

Sonny Perdue, if confirmed as U.S. agriculture secretary, would play a key role in shaping and implementing the $71 billion food-assistance program that has been the subject of heated debate in Congress for decades.

During his hearing before a Senate committee set for Thursday, Mr. Perdue could face questions over management of trade policy and financial supports for farmers, who are grappling with a prolonged slump in crop prices, according to congressional staff.

THE MARKETS:

Cattle, Hogs Slide on Seasonal Pressure

CHICAGO--Cattle and hog futures fell Monday as seasonal pressure began to weigh on prices.

April live cattle futures dropped 0.4% to $1.18900 a pound at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange as traders anticipated more livestock entering the market in the coming weeks.

Tighter supplies of cattle have prompted a rally in beef and cash trade prices, with packers paying feedyards handsomely for cattle as they enjoy healthy margins for their beef. But analysts say the bull market is finishing, and see little room for further gains.

Stocks mentioned in the article : Monsanto Company, Bayer AG (ADR)
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