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SINGAPORE: Japanese rubber futures fell on Tuesday tracking losses in the Shanghai market, as weaker-than-expected demand growth in top buyer China weighed on sentiment.

The Osaka Exchange (OSE) rubber contract for December delivery was down 2.6 yen, or 1.3%, at 202.6 yen ($1.46) per kg as of 0206 GMT. The OSE was closed on Monday for a public holiday in Japan.

The rubber contract on the Shanghai futures exchange (SHFE) for September delivery was down 120 yuan, or 1.0%, at 12,160 yuan ($1,696) per metric ton. Rubber inventories in warehouses monitored by the Shanghai Futures Exchange rose 2.2% from last Friday, the exchange said on Friday. Japan’s benchmark Nikkei average opened up 0.2%.

China’s economy grew at a frail pace in the second quarter as demand weakens at home and abroad, data showed on Monday, with the post-COVID momentum faltering rapidly and raising pressure on policymakers to deliver more stimulus to shore up activity.

The Japanese yen rose marginally to 138.66 per dollar and remains more than 4% clear of a seven-month low it hit last month. A firm yen makes assets dominated by the currency less affordable for overseas buyers.

US stocks rose on Monday on expectations corporate earnings will exceed forecasts, but global shares and the dollar traded little changed. The front-month rubber contract on Singapore Exchange’s SICOM platform for August delivery last traded at 129.3 US cents per kg, up 0.1%.

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