Palm Oil Retreats Before Malaysian Inventory, Production Data

Palm oil fell before the release of data from Malaysia which may show that inventories dropped last month, while output climbed for the first time in six months.

The contract for June delivery fell as much as 0.5 percent to 2,382 ringgit ($787) a metric ton on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives exchange and was at 2,387 ringgit at 11:34 a.m. in Kuala Lumpur. Futures have gained 1.2 percent this week.

Reserves probably shrank 7 percent to 2.27 million tons in March from a month earlier, the steepest drop since January 2011, according to a Bloomberg survey published April 8. Output gained 2.3 percent to 1.33 million tons, the first monthly increase since September, while shipments rose 2.1 percent to 1.43 million, the survey showed. The Malaysian Palm Oil Board is scheduled to release the data at 12:30 p.m. today.

“Prices went up quite a bit in anticipation of the draw down in stocks,” said James Ratnam, an analyst at TA Securities Holdings Bhd. in Kuala Lumpur. Traders are waiting for the data for further cues, he said.

Inventories may drop to about 2 million tons in April or May as demand remains strong, Ratnam said. Stockpiles have fallen 7.2 percent to 2.44 million tons in February from a record 2.63 million tons in December, board data show. Shipments climbed 3.5 percent to 456,440 tons in the first 10 days of April from 441,025 tons in the same period in March, Intertek said today.

Soybean oil for May delivery was little changed at 49.94 cents a pound on the Chicago Board of Trade. Soybeans for delivery in May lost 0.4 percent to $13.905 a bushel.

Refined palm oil for September delivery was little changed at 6,324 yuan ($1,021) a ton on the Dalian Commodity Exchange. Soybean oil for delivery in the same month gained 0.2 percent to 7,946 yuan a ton.

To contact the reporter on this story: Ranjeetha Pakiam in Kuala Lumpur at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James Poole at



Source : Bloomberg

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