- Palm falls after hitting highest since May 3, 2012.
- Nov. 1-20 exports expected to decline.
- Low palm oil inventory may carry forward to mid-2021.
KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian palm futures reversed early gains on Thursday, retreating from a more than eight-year peak as traders expect a sharp decline in November exports.
The benchmark palm oil contract for February delivery on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives Exchange closed 0.65% lower at 3,342 ringgit ($815.52) a tonne.
Traders are awaiting Nov. 1-20 export data by cargo surveyors due on Friday, but have pegged it to fall around 17%.
Earlier in the session, palm rose 1.7% to its highest since May 3, 2012.
Palm prices were higher on technical buying, reflecting firm soybean oil, but palm exports are weak, said Sathia Varqa, co-founder of Singapore-based Palm Oil Analytics.
Meanwhile, UOB KayHian in a report said the combined palm oil inventory in the four major consuming countries - Indonesia, Malaysia, India and China - fell to nine million tonnes by end-September, and is unlikely to increase significantly over the next 4-6 months.
The high crude palm oil prices could lead to demand rationing in developing countries, it added.
Dalian's most-active soyoil contract rose 2%, while its palm oil contract jumped 2.7%. Soyoil prices on the Chicago Board of Trade were down 0.8%.
Palm oil is affected by price movements in related oils as they compete for a share in the global vegetable oils market.