KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian palm oil futures were little changed on Tuesday after closing at near 8-month highs in the previous session, as stronger rival oils and crude oil prices offset a decline in exports.

The benchmark palm oil contract for May delivery on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives Exchange gained 4 ringgit, or 0.10%, to 4,135 ringgit ($883.92) during early trade.

Malaysian palm oil up

The contract closed at its highest levels since July 24, 2023 on Monday.

Fundamentals

  • Dalian’s most-active soyoil contract rose 0.5%, while its palm oil contract added 0.39%. Soyoil prices on the Chicago Board of Trade were down 0.21%.

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

  • Oil prices rose in early Asian trading, but price moves were limited as the market waited for monthly reports from oil agencies.

  • Stronger crude oil futures make palm a more attractive option for biodiesel feedstock.

  • Malaysia’s palm oil stocks at the end of February dwindled to their lowest levels in seven months as production hit a 10-month low, offsetting the slowdown in exports, the industry regulator said on Monday.

  • Inventories at the end of February fell 5% from the previous month to 1.92 million metric tons, crude palm oil production declined 10.18% to 1.26 million tons, while exports plunged 24.75% to 1.02 million tons, data from industry regulator the Malaysian Palm Oil Board (MPOB) showed.

  • Exports of Malaysian palm oil products for March 1-10 rose 6.8% to 382,640 tons from 358,365 tons shipped during the previous month, cargo surveyor Intertek Testing Services said.

  • Another cargo surveyor, AmSpec Agri Malaysia, said exports during the same period rose 6.2% from a month ago to 325,543 tons.

  • Palm oil may rise into 4,190-4,242 ringgit per metric ton, as it has resumed its uptrend within a rising channel, Reuters technical analyst Wang Tao said.

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