Rubber Near Two-Week High as Producers to Discuss Price Support

Rubber settled near the highest close in two weeks amid an industry meeting in Thailand where the largest producers may discuss measures to support prices.

The contract for delivery in September on the Tokyo Commodity Exchange closed little changed 275.7 yen a kilogram ($2,780 a metric ton). Futures settled at 275.9 yen yesterday, the highest since March 27, and have lost 8.9 percent this year.

Southeast Asian nations need to work together to help develop the rubber industry, said Yuttapong Charasathien, Thailand’s deputy minister of agriculture and cooperatives, at the Asean Plus 2013 Rubber Conference in Phuket today. Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia, producers representing 70 percent of global output, are set to discuss measures to boost prices, including extending export curbs, according to Yuttapong.

“The market is supported by expectations for coordinated actions by the three producers,” said Hideshi Matsunaga, an analyst at broker ACE Koeki Co. in Tokyo.

The three Asian nations agreed to cut exports by 300,000 tons in the six months through March after futures in Tokyo slumped to a three-year low of 205.6 yen in August.

The contract for delivery in September added 0.6 percent to close at 21,820 yuan ($3,523) a ton on the Shanghai Futures Exchange. China’s rubber imports jumped 53 percent to 230,000 tons last month from February, the customs agency said today.

Thai rubber free-on-board was unchanged at 82.25 baht ($2.83) a kilogram today, according to the Rubber Research Institute of Thailand. The price touched 81.75 baht on April 5, the lowest level since November 2009, data compiled by Bloomberg showed.

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