March 19, 2018 / 5:15 AM / 2 years ago

VEGOILS-Palm supported by weaker ringgit, rising demand outlook

    * Palm hits one-week low of 2,407 rgt/T
    * Softer gains in U.S. soyoil capping palm's gains - Trader

    By Emily Chow
    KUALA LUMPUR, March 19 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil
futures edged up in early trade on Monday supported by weakness
in the ringgit, its currency of trade, and as traders
were bullish about prospects of improving demand.
    The benchmark palm oil contract for June delivery
on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives Exchange rose 0.4 percent to
2,425 ringgit ($620.05) a tonne at the midday break, after
falling to a one-week low of 2,407 ringgit earlier in the
    Trading volumes stood at 22,858 lots of 25 tonnes each at
noon on Monday.
    "The market is supported in anticipation of better
exports... But lower soyoil seems to be checking palm's upside,"
said a Kuala Lumpur-based trader, referring to soyoil on the
U.S. Chicago Board of Trade. 
    Another trader in Kuala Lumpur added that a slightly weaker
ringgit also added to palm's gains, as this makes the edible oil
cheaper for holders of foreign currencies.
    The ringgit slipped 0.1 percent to 3.9110 against the dollar
on Monday afternoon.
    Palm oil exports from Malaysia, the world's second largest
producer, weakened 2-5 percent in the first half of March versus
the corresponding period in February, according to shipment
    Demand is expected to pick up from regions such as the
Middle East, as buyers stock up ahead of Ramadan which begins in
mid-May this year. 
    The Muslim holy month sees devotees break day-long fasts
with communal feasting, which incurs higher usage of palm oil
for cooking purposes. Buyers usually start increasing purchases
of palm oil one to two months ahead of the festivities.
    In other related oils, the Chicago Board of Trade's May
soybean oil contract rose 0.1 percent, while the May
soybean oil on China's Dalian Commodity Exchange fell
0.4 percent. 
    The Dalian May palm oil contract was also down 0.4
    Palm oil prices are impacted by movements in rival edible
oils as they compete in the global vegetable oils market.    

    Palm, soy and crude oil prices as of 0503 GMT
 Contract          Month    Last  Change     Low    High  Volume
 MY PALM OIL       APR8     2436   -2.00    2426    2442     428
 MY PALM OIL       MAY8     2436   +8.00    2420    2439    5419
 MY PALM OIL       JUN8     2425   +9.00    2407    2428    8556
 CHINA PALM OLEIN  MAY8     5104  -18.00    5056    5112  159316
 CHINA SOYOIL      MAY8     5678  -20.00    5646    5692  234540
 CBOT SOY OIL      MAY8    32.02   +0.04   31.87    32.1    4619
 INDIA PALM OIL    MAR8   639.40   -3.10  638.30   640.4     130
 INDIA SOYOIL      MAR8   766.05   -3.95   765.4  766.05      30
 NYMEX CRUDE       APR8    61.99   -0.35   61.96   62.28    4169
  Palm oil prices in Malaysian ringgit per tonne
  CBOT soy oil in U.S. cents per pound
  Dalian soy oil and RBD palm olein in Chinese yuan per tonne
  India soy oil in Indian rupee per 10 kg
  Crude in U.S. dollars per barrel
($1 = 3.9110 ringgit)
($1 = 65.0250 Indian rupees)
($1 = 6.3305 Chinese yuan) 

 (Reporting by Emily Chow; Editing by Sunil Nair)
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