By Kavita Desai
MUMBAI – Rubber contracts on the Indian Commodity Exchange extended fall from Tuesday because of fresh selling after the recent rise in prices, said analysts. The most active December contract settled at 13,222 rupees per 100 kg, down 0.6%. The front-month December contract on Indian Commodity Exchange had hit a two-month high of 13,460 rupees on Monday.
Prices of natural rubber in Kerala, however, rose today due to concern over low supply, and decline in imports from southeast Asian countries, said Santhosh Kumar, senior vice president for rubber at United Planters’ Association of Southern India.
The widely-traded RSS-4 variety of rubber was sold at 130-131 rupees per kg, up 1 rupee from Tuesday, traders said.
“Supply remained weak as rains in key producing areas is disrupting the tapping activity,” said Kumar.
In global markets, rubber futures on Tokyo Commodity Exchange ended higher as the yen weakened against the US dollar, and on expectation of a fall in global output due to a pest attack in major producers like Thailand, Indonesia, and Malaysia, said analysts. The most-active April contract on the Japanese bourse was 0.6% higher at 185.9 yen (around 121.6 rupees) per kg.
A weak yen makes Japanese currency-denominated rubber cheaper for overseas buyers.
The Rubber Authority of Thailand estimated that 64,000 ha of rubber crop has been affected in southern Thailand due to pest attack. Global supply is expected to take a hit this year as Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia produce around 70% of the world’s natural rubber.
In Thailand, price of the RSS-3 variety rubber was unchanged at $155.00 per 100 kg today, Rubber Board data showed. In Malaysia, the price of the SMR-20 variety rose by $1.5 to $142.60 per 100 kg.
The following table shows today’s closing prices of rubber, in rupees per kg, as detailed by the Rubber Board, and the change in prices, in rupees, compared with the previous close:
US$1 = 71.4050 rupees
Edited by Boris Pradhan