Palm Oil Drops to One-Week Low on Higher Global Soybean Reserves

Palm oil dropped to the lowest level in more than a week on concern rising soybean stockpiles will boost global vegetable oil supplies and as exports from Malaysia, the second-biggest producer, fell.

The February-delivery contract declined as much as 1.2 percent to 3,046 ringgit ($966) per metric ton on the Malaysia Derivatives Exchange, the lowest level since Dec. 2, and traded at 3,051 ringgit at 11:58 a.m. in Kuala Lumpur. Futures gained 0.7 percent last week.

Global soybean reserves will be 1.5 percent bigger than last month’s estimate and U.S. stockpiles will rise 15 percent to a five-year high, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said on Dec. 9. The forecast for U.S. exports was cut to 1.3 billion bushels from 1.325 billion in November. That compares with 1.501 billion bushels in the previous year.

“Palm oil is reacting as a spill-over effect to the lower close in Chicago after the USDA reported higher soybean stockpiles,” Ryan Long, vice president of futures and options at OSK Holdings Bhd., said by phone from Kuala Lumpur.

Soybeans fell on Dec. 9 by as much as 2.9 percent to $11.0025 a bushel, the lowest price for the most-active contract since Oct. 8, 2010. The January-delivery contract gained as much as 0.7 percent to $11.15 on the Chicago Board of Trade today.

Palm oil exports from Malaysia declined 5.1 percent to 443,699 tons during the first 10 days of December from the same period a month earlier, according to surveyor Intertek.

Palm oil for delivery in May retreated as much as 1.6 percent to 7,842 yuan ($1,233) per ton on the Dalian Commodity Exchange. Soybean oil for September delivery declined as much as 1.2 percent to 8,726 yuan per ton.

To contact the reporter on this story: Swansy Afonso in Mumbai at safonso2@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James Poole at jpoole4@bloomberg.net

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