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JAKARTA: Malaysian palm oil futures closed lower on Monday after three consecutive sessions of gains, weighed down by weakness in Dalian Palm Olein and Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) soybean oil.

The benchmark palm oil contract for December delivery on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives Exchange lost 76 ringgit, or 1.98%, to 3,754 ringgit ($800.94) per metric ton at the close.

“The prices failed to sustain last Friday’s strength, mainly dragged by morning weakness in Dalian Palm Olein,” a Kuala Lumpur-based trader said.

“Despite seeing some strength in crude oil, continued weakness in CBOT soybean oil sent December palm price to test midday’s low at 3,737 ringgit.”

Dalian’s most-active soyoil contract was down 1.34%, while its palm oil contract lost 1.65%. Soyoil prices on the Chicago Board of Trade declined 0.47%.

Palm oil is affected by price movements in related oils as they compete for a share in the global vegetable oils market.

Indonesia set its crude palm oil reference price at $798.83 per ton for the Sept. 16-30 period, down from the first half of the month. However, the export tax and levy were left unchanged at $33 per ton and $85 per ton, respectively.

China will increase its imports of Malaysian palm oil by 250,000 tons a year, state news agency Bernama reported on Sunday, citing Malaysian Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim.

Exports of Malaysian palm oil products for Sept. 1-15 fell 9.3% from a month earlier to 574,936 tons, independent inspection company AmSpec Agri Malaysia said on Friday.

Palm oil may fall into a range of 3,705 ringgit to 3,726 ringgit per ton, following its failure to break a resistance zone of 3,795 ringgit to 3,820 ringgit, according to Reuters’ technical analyst Wang Tao.

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