Rubber advanced for the first time in four days as crude oil traded near the highest level since September, boosting the appeal of the commodity used in tires.
Rubber for delivery in June rose 0.4 percent to close at 305.4 yen a kilogram ($3,445 a metric ton) on the Tokyo Commodity Exchange after touching 301 yen, the lowest level since Dec. 28.
Crude for February delivery was little changed at $94.11 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange after advancing 1 percent to end at $94.24 yesterday, the highest close since Sept. 18. Oil is used to make synthetic rubber.
“The market was supported by yesterday’s rally in crude oil prices,” said Toshimitsu Kawanabe, an analyst at Tokyo-based commodity broker Central Shoji Co.
Investors are waiting for China’s industrial production data tomorrow to set the direction for next week, said Kazuhiko Saito, an analyst at broker Fujitomi Co. in Tokyo.
China will release data on fourth-quarter gross domestic product, December industrial production and retail sales and full-year fixed-asset investment. Economic growth probably accelerated to 7.8 percent in the October-to-December period from a year earlier, up from a three-year low in the previous quarter, according to a Bloomberg News survey.
Natural-rubber inventories climbed to 101,482 tons last week, the highest level since March 2010, according to data from the Shanghai Futures Exchange.
Rubber for delivery in May rose 0.4 percent to close at 25,585 yuan ($4,113) a ton on the SHFE. Thai rubber free-on-board dropped for a fourth day, falling 1.5 percent to 97.70 baht ($3.27) a kilogram, according to the Rubber Research Institute of Thailand.