Rubber swung between losses and gains as data showed China’s manufacturing is growing at a slower pace this month, raising concern that demand may weaken from the world’s largest user of the commodity used in tires. The weaker Japanese currency supported yen-based futures.
Rubber for delivery in September fell as much as 0.7 percent to 249.1 yen a kilogram ($2,520 a metric ton) on the Tokyo Commodity Exchange, the lowest level since April 19. Futures swung between gains and losses and traded at 251.3 yen at 11:48 a.m.
The preliminary reading of 50.5 for China’s Purchasing Managers’ Index released by HSBC Holdings Plc and Markit Economics slowed from a final 51.6 for March. The number was also below the median 51.5 estimate in a Bloomberg News survey of 11 analysts. A reading above 50 indicates expansion.
Losses were limited as Japan’s currency traded near a four- year low against the dollar, making yen-denominated futures attractive to investors, he said.
Rubber for September delivery on the Shanghai Futures Exchange was little changed at 18,635 yuan ($3,017) a ton. Thai rubber free-on-board rose 1.9 percent to 80.50 baht ($2.80) a kilogram yesterday, according to Rubber Research Institute of Thailand. The price fell to 79 baht on April 19, the lowest since October 2009.
To contact the reporter on this story: Aya Takada in Tokyo at firstname.lastname@example.org