Palm jumps to 2-week peak on short covering, India weather forecasts

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KUALA LUMPUR (Aug 1): Malaysian palm oil futures rose over 1% on Wednesday evening, a third straight day of gains, on the back of technical buying and as the market turned bullish on forecasts that the world's top palm importer India is likely to receive below-normal monsoon rains in 2018.

The benchmark palm oil contract for October delivery on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives Exchange was 0.8% higher at 2,212 ringgit (US$544.29) a tonne at the end of the trading day. 

It earlier rose as much as 1.1%  to 2,219 ringgit, its strongest levels since July 19. 

Trading volume stood at 39,245 lots of 25 tonnes each at the close of trade.

"The market is most likely short covering after a failure to go lower, and is also up on India's weather play which will likely reduce their crop and they will need to import more," said a Kuala Lumpur-based trader. 

A private weather forecaster said on Wednesday that India is likely to receive below-normal monsoon rains in 2018, raising concerns over farm output and economic growth in Asia's third-biggest economy, where half the farmland lacks irrigation.

India's 260 million farmers depend on monsoon rains to grow crops such as rice, sugar cane, corn, cotton and soybeans.

In other related oils, the Chicago December soybean oil contract declined 0.3%, while the September soybean oil contract on China's Dalian Commodity Exchange edged up 0.04%. 

The Dalian September palm oil contract was also up 0.04%.

Palm oil prices are influenced by the performance of other edible oils, as they compete for a share in the global vegetable oils market.

Palm, soy and crude oil prices at 1050 GMT

Contract Month Last Change Low High Volume
MY PALM OIL AUG8 2150 +18.00 2123 2150 19
MY PALM OIL SEP8 2190 +16.00 2171 2198 3108
MY PALM OIL OCT8 2211 +18.00 2190 2219 20282
CHINA PALM OLEIN JAN9 4868 +22.00 4840 4884 282180
CHINA SOYOIL JAN9 5814 +0.00 5782 5860 402496
CBOT SOY OIL DEC8 29.2 -0.09 29.08 29.27 8643
INDIA PALM OIL AUG8 596.60 -3.10 594.20 598 1912
INDIA SOYOIL AUG8 742.9 -1.85 741.2 745.2 10160
NYMEX CRUDE SEP8 68.06 -0.70 67.89 68.52 101209

Palm oil prices in Malaysian ringgit per tonne
CBOT soy oil in U.S. cents per pound
Dalian soy oil and RBD palm olein in Chinese yuan per tonne
India soy oil in Indian rupee per 10 kg
Crude in U.S. dollars per barrel

(US$1 = 4.0640 ringgit)
(US$1 = 68.4500 Indian rupees)
(US$1 = 6.7941 Chinese yuan)