Palm declines on weaker related oils, output concerns

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KUALA LUMPUR (Feb 22): Malaysian palm oil futures reversed early gains on Friday to close in negative territory, tracking declines in soyoil on the U.S. Chicago Board of Trade.

The benchmark palm oil contract for May delivery on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives Exchange was down 0.3% at 2,257 ringgit (US$552.50) a tonne at the close.

It earlier rose to 2,278 ringgit, its highest in three sessions and is up 0.1% for the week after two previous straight weeks of declines.

Trading volumes stood at 32,041 lots of 25 tonnes each.

"Palm fell, tracking easier external markets," one Kuala Lumpur trader said, referring to U.S. soyoil. 

Another trader had said that earlier, market gains were capped by forecasts for higher than usual output.

Palm oil generally registers production declines in the first quarter. Official data last showed that January output in Malaysia fell 3.9% from the previous month to 1.74 million tonnes. 

The levels, however, were higher than the 1.59 million tonnes of recorded production in January last year and 1.28 million tonnes in 2017. 

Traders are also forecasting February output to fall, from January, but remain up year on year. 

In related oils, the Chicago March soybean oil contract was down by 0.5% on Friday. 

The May soyoil contract on the Dalian Commodity Exchange rose 0.5%t and the Dalian May palm oil contract was up 0.1%.    

Palm oil prices are affected by movements in soyoil, which competes for a share in the global vegetable oil market.   
    
 Palm, soy and crude oil prices at 1040 GMT

Contract Month Last Change Low High Volume
MY PALM OIL MAR9 2138 -7.00 2132 2158 725
MY PALM OIL APR9 2220 -13.00 2218 2249 4806
MY PALM OIL MAY9 2252 -12.00 2250 2278 14440
CHINA PALM OLEIN MAY9 4712 +4.00 4698 4754 311030
CHINA SOYOIL MAY9 5714 +26.00 5700 5758 352112
CBOT SOY OIL MAR9 30.35 -0.14 30.3 30.48 3449
INDIA PALM OIL FEB9 564.10 -4.30 563.90 568.3 263
INDIA SOYOIL MAR9 767.15 -2.75 766.6 772 4820
NYMEX CRUDE APR9 57.04 +0.08 56.71 57.20 74763

 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 = 4.0760 ringgit)
(US$1 = 71.1400 Indian rupees)
(US$1 = 6.7199 Chinese yuan)