KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian palm oil futures rose nearly 2% on Friday, lifted by stronger rival Dalian oils and industry forecasts pegging a decline in January production, but the contract fell 3.3% for the week. The benchmark palm oil contract for April delivery on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives Exchange settled up 58 ringgit, or 1.75%, at 3,375 ringgit ($829.65) a tonne, after rising as much as 3.1% during the session.
Palm logged its third weekly fall in four. Malaysia’s crude palm oil production, which has been suffering from flooding in parts of Malaysia and an acute labour shortage, is forecast to nosedive 13% to 1.16 million tonnes, its lowest since February 2016, a Reuters poll showed.
End-January inventories likely rebounded 1.8% from the previous month to 1.29 million tonnes, as a deep plunge in exports offset output. The Malaysian Palm Oil Board will release data on Feb. 10.
“Demand at present, even relative to a low base in January, is not good at just 275,000-300,000 tonnes for the Feb. 1-10 period,” said Marcello Cultrera, institutional sales manager & broker at Phillip Futures in Kuala Lumpur.
March and April Indonesian crude palm oil prices are much cheaper today and a lower price correction seems likely to induce demand, he added.
Dalian’s most-active soyaoil contract rose 2%, while its palm oil contract gained 1.9%. Soyaoil prices on the Chicago Board of Trade were down 0.1%. Palm oil is affected by price movements in related oils as they compete for a share in the global vegetable oils market.