KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian palm oil futures ticked up on Thursday, underpinned by better-than-expected November export volumes, although a lack of fresh orders from importers kept a lid on prices.

The benchmark palm oil contract for February delivery on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives Exchange was up 23 ringgit, or 0.59%, at 3,895 ringgit ($836.38) at the close.

Improved import margins and parities in key buyers China and India on restocking, and stronger domestic consumption over the past 10 days have led to better-than-expected palm demand for November, said Marcello Cultrera, director at Singapore-based commodities consultancy Apricus 8 Pte Ltd.

Exports of Malaysian palm oil products in November were estimated to be up between 2% and 11% from the previous month, data from surveyors

Intertek Testing Services AmSpec Agri Malaysia showed on Thursday.

Top producer Indonesia’s increase in palm oil export duties and levies also helped support the market, said Anilkumar Bagani, research head at Sunvin Group, a Mumbai-based vegetable oil brokerage.

Palm slips to near two-week low on weaker crude

However, a lack of fresh buying from key destinations due to higher stocks and weakness in demand is weighing on prices, Bagani said.

Indonesia, the world’s biggest palm oil producer and exporter, on Wednesday raised the crude palm oil (CPO) reference price for the Dec. 1-15 period to $795.14 per metric ton from the current $750.54 per ton, making Malaysian palm oil more attractive.

In related oils, Dalian’s most-active soyoil contract rose 0.41%, while its palm oil contract ticked up 0.14%. Soyoil prices on the Chicago Board of Trade were up 0.08%.

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


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