Rubber futures pared gains after jumping to the highest level in almost two months as a slump in producer prices in China signaled demand is weakening in the world’s largest consumer of the commodity used in tires.
Rubber for delivery in October added 0.2 percent to 276.8 yen a kilogram ($2,801 a metric ton) on the Tokyo Commodity Exchange, the highest settlement since April 11. The most-active contract earlier climbed as much as 3.3 percent to 285.2 yen, the highest level since March 13. The advance trimmed this year’s losses to 8.5 percent.
China’s producer prices dropped 2.6 percent in April from 1.9 percent a month earlier, the statistics bureau said today. China’s stocks fell the most in two weeks as the data added to concerns the nation’s economic recovery lacks strength.
“Concerns about Chinese demand put a drag on the rubber market,” Takaki Shigemoto, an analyst at research company JSC Corp. in Tokyo, said by phone.
Thai rubber free-on-board rose 0.2 percent to 89.30 baht ($3.03) a kilogram today, the highest level since March 12, according to the Rubber Research Institute of Thailand. It was a 13 percent rebound from this year’s low of 79 baht reached on April 19. The nation, the biggest rubber producer, extended curbs on exports by 60 days to the end of May to boost prices, Deputy Farm Minister Yuttapong Charasathien said April 1.
“Futures in Tokyo corrected higher as the market is undervalued compared with Thai cash prices,” said Hideshi Matsunaga, an analyst at broker ACE Koeki Co. in Tokyo.
Rubber for delivery in September on the Shanghai Futures Exchange lost 0.8 percent to 20,335 yuan ($3,315) a ton. China’s passenger-vehicle sales rose 13 percent in April, data from the state-backed China Association of Automobile Manufacturers showed today.