Por Tom Polansek
CHICAGO (Reuters) – Chicago corn futures hit their highest price since March 2013 on Monday, on strong demand for limited supplies from the United States and concerns about dry weather hurting production in Brazil.
* The busiest corn contract for July posted the biggest gains, while the soybean and wheat markets slumped.
* Traders continue to focus on tight global corn supplies, as many US farmers are working to plant crops for the fall harvest, rather than selling crops stored in containers.
* “The supply shortage situation will certainly not improve in July as ethanol producers, cattle feeders and exporters struggle to get cash corn,” said Tomm Pfitzenmaier, analyst at Summit Commodity Brokerage in Iowa.
* The most active corn futures in Chicago were up 10.75 cents to $ 6.84 a bushel at 1750 GMT, after previously setting an eight-year high of $ 6.98.
* Soybeans fell 13.75 cents to $ 15.205 a bushel after hitting 8 1/2 year highs last week. Wheat fell 11.75 cents to $ 7.23 a bushel.
* Grain traders await an update on plantings in the United States in a weekly report on the progress of crops from the Department of Agriculture due to be released at 2000 GMT. It would show that farmers planted 44% of their expected corn acres through Sunday, according to the average estimate from a Reuters poll of 12 analysts.
* Analysts forecast that the USDA report will show soybean planting 25% complete.
(Reporting by Tom Polansek in Chicago, Additional reporting by Michael Hogan in Hamburg, Naveen Thukral in Singapore and Colin Packham in Canberra. Edited in Spanish by Rodrigo Charme)