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Palm oil edges higher

August 31, 2018

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KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian palm oil futures inched higher on Thursday evening on a weaker ringgit and expectations that export figures due early next week will show monthly gains.

The benchmark palm oil contract for November delivery on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives Exchange was up 1.4 per cent at 2,248 ringgit ($547.22) a tonne at Thursday’s close. Trading volumes stood at 42,591 lots of 25 tonnes each at the end of the trading day. “The weaker ringgit had some impact on the market,” said a Singapore-based futures trader.

A weaker ringgit, palm oil’s currency of trade, usually makes the edible oil cheaper for holders of foreign currencies.

The ringgit is at its weakest levels against the dollar since November, and was last traded at 4.1050 per dollar on Thursday afternoon.

“The market is also expecting higher export figures, plus some covering ahead of a long weekend,” said a Kuala Lumpur-based trader, referring to Malaysia’s palm oil August shipments data, scheduled to be released by cargo surveyors on September 3.

Markets in Malaysia close on Friday for a national holiday. In other related oils, the Chicago December soybean oil contract was up 0.6pc while the January soybean oil contract on China’s Dalian Commodity Exchange declined 0.1pc.

Published in Dawn, August 31st, 2018