Palm Retreats as Lower Exports Seen Boosting Malaysian Reserves

Palm oil fell on concern that a drop in exports from Malaysia probably boosted stockpiles in the world’s second-largest producer to an eight-month high.

The contract for February delivery dropped 0.6 percent to close at 2,641 ringgit ($817) a metric ton on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives, the fourth day of losses in five sessions. Futures pared gains to 8.3 percent this year.

Stockpiles in Malaysia probably jumped 6.2 percent to 1.96 million tons in November from a month earlier, the highest level since March, a Bloomberg survey showed. Exports dropped 5.4 percent to 1.57 million tons, while output fell 2.6 percent to 1.92 million tons, the survey showed. The Malaysian Palm Oil Board may release official data on Dec. 10.

“Stockpiles likely rose in November because of a fall in exports and this has moved prices lower,” said Isha Trivedi, an analyst at PhillipCapital India Pvt. Ltd. “We could expect demand to increase in the second half of this month as China would stock up ahead of the Lunar New Year.”

China, the world’s largest palm oil importer after India, celebrates the Lunar New Year festival at the end of January.

Soybean oil for January delivery declined 0.6 percent to 40.12 cents a pound on the Chicago Board of Trade. Soybeans were little changed at $13.305 a bushel.

Refined palm oil for May delivery fell 1.5 percent to close at 6,160 yuan ($1,011) a ton on the Dalian Commodity Exchange. Soybean oil slid 0.8 percent to end at 7,204 yuan.

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