Palm oil prices ease on slow exports
SINGAPORE, July 31: Malaysian crude palm oil edged lower on Tuesday, posting its third successive monthly loss, as weak July exports offset a downgrade of soy crop conditions by the US Department of Agriculture that fed fears of tighter global oilseed supplies.
The USDA rated 29 per cent of the soybean crop as good-to-excellent on Monday, down 2 percentage points from the previous week, reflecting damage from persistent drought in the US Midwest.
But palm oil futures retreated from a one-week high hit the previous day as traders priced in a monthly decline in Malaysian palm oil exports that could ease stocks. “Exports are worse than expected,” said a dealer with a foreign commodities brokerage in Kuala Lumpur.
“Hopefully crude palm oil exports will pick up after the release of the tax-free quota or else stocks might climb back up to the 2-million-ton mark.”
Benchmark October palm oil futures on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives Exchange lost 0.8 per cent to close at 2,980 ringgit ($953) per ton.
Prices touched 3,007 ringgit on Monday, the highest level since July 23. Crude palm oil futures lost 1.3 per cent in July, marking their third monthly loss in a row.
Traded volumes stood at 34,609 lots of 25 tons each. —Reuters