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 Mahamad Rodzi Abdul Ghani
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 Dow Jones

Mkt Awaits MPOB Data6/1/05 KUALA LUMPUR (Dow Jones)--Crude palm oil futures on the BursaMalaysia Derivatives ended little changed for a second straight dayThursday amid sluggish trading as an absence of fresh leads continued tosap interest.The benchmark March CPO moved within a very narrow MYR9 band throughoutthe day before closing MYR1 lower at MYR1,356 a metric ton.Wednesday, the contract ended only MYR2 higher.Earlier in the week, the market fell sharply to reach near 16-monthlows, but since then, prices have been range-bound amid subdued tradinginterest.Thursday's trading volume was a poor 1,838 lots, far below usual levelsof at least 4,000 lots."Sentiment is still quite bearish, but the market is a bit oversold atthe moment so people are backing off and waiting for some fresh leads," atrader said.Traders said market players will be watching soyoil futures in thenear-term for direction as there are no supply and demand data due thisweek.Usually, a crop report from private surveyor Palmis Management Bhd. is atalking point for market players during the first week of each month.However, the industry's sole forecaster has ceased issuing its reports.Market participants are now waiting for official December supply anddemand figures from the government-run Malaysian Palm Oil Board. The dataare due midday Monday.Market expectations are for the MPOB to report a rise in stocks inDecember due to high production.Stocks stood about 1.4 million tons at end-November and are speculatedto have touched record levels of over 1.5 million tons by end-2004,traders said.They said high stocks, if confirmed by the MPOB figures, could pressurepalm oil prices to test the psychological support level of MYR1,300 in thelonger term.Open interest in CPO futures totaled 27,369 lots at the end ofWednesday, down slightly from 27,630 lots the previous day.The cash market was also flat, mirroring the performance of the futuresmarket.RBD palm olein for January/February/March delivery was last offeredunchanged at $387.50/ton.Trading activity was slow, though there was talk of an unconfirmed tradefor January at $387.50/ton, traders said.January CPO, locally delivered, was offered at MYR1,370/ton, down MYR5.

Indonesia Palm Oil Lower On Excess Supply(Dow Jones)--Indonesia's palm oil prices lower on excess supply at localmarket, coupled with weak export demand. CPO in Medan traded lower atIDR3,537/kg vs IDR3,550/kg yesterday. "CPO stocks in local market areabundant but demand for exports is weakening due to low soyoil prices,"says trader in Medan. RBD olein traded lower at IDR3,880/kg vs IDR3,890/kgyesterday.

Palm Oil Market Seen Mostly Slow Until Feb(Dow Jones)--Slow palm oil market activity, low volumes may becomefixture in coming weeks due to holidays; Trading mostly sluggish sincelate-December. Trader in Malaysia says subdued trading may continue forbetter part of next month because of Hari Raya Haji holidays, then ChineseNew Year in mid-February. Volume for CPO futures so far today at 891 lots,well below usual level of around 3,000-4,000 lots by this time. BenchmarkMarch CPO contract unchanged at MYR1,357/ton.

Malaysian Cash Palm Oil Flat In Slow Trade(Dow Jones)--Like CPO futures market, Malaysian cash palm oil pricesalso flat amid slow trading. RBD palm olein for January/February/Marchoffered unchanged at $387.50; January CPO, locally delivered, MYR5 lowerat MYR1,370. Traders say market lacking fresh leads to spur tradingactivity; quotes in cash market mainly confined to a few refiners, with notrades reported so far. Most participants cautious, as unsure aboutlonger-term market direction.

Brazil Soy Crop At Risk As Rust Spreads(Dow Jones)--Government researchers say Asian soybean rust continuesto spread in Brazil, suggesting increased risk of crop losses; any cropdamage would be friendly for edible oil prices, traders say. Croppathologist Rafael Soares says rust fungus now identified in 128municipalities, up from 88 two weeks ago.

China Olein Mkt Weak As Stocks Hit 260,000MT(Dow Jones)--RBD palm olein prices in China weak as stocks continue tobuild up, traders say. Olein prices at major ports quoted mostly aroundCNY4,400-CNY4,500/ton, with stocks touching 260,000 tons, trader says.Persistent low domestic selling prices, high stocks may limit room forChinese importers to make big purchases from Malaysia, Indonesia in comingmonths.

Palm Oil Mkt Slow Amid Lack Of Palmis Data(Dow Jones)--Slow palm oil trading shows market may be missing Palmis'regular reports. Palmis was industry's sole private surveyor, issuing upto three crop reports each month, but has stopped since end-2004 due tofinancial constraints. "The absence of Palmis has left a bit of a vacuumbecause it at least gave people something to talk about. Now, we'll justhave to wait for the official monthly figures from the MPOB," trader says.Next MPOB supply/demand report due Jan. 10.

Malaysian Palm Oil Board ( MPOB ) Lot 6, SS6, Jalan Perbandaran, 47301 Kelana Jaya, Selangor Darul Ehsan, MALAYSIA.
Tel : 603 - 7802 2800 || Fax : 603 - 7803 3533