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TOCOM rubber hits 4-month high on technical buying

TOKYO, Sept 21 (Reuters) – Benchmark Tokyo rubber futures climbed to a four-month high on Wednesday on technical buying, after a sharp rally the previous day, but shed some gains as investors booked profits ahead of a national holiday in Japan. The Tokyo Commodity Exchange (TOCOM) rubber contract for February delivery JRUc6 0#2JRU: finished up 3.3 yen, or 2.0 percent, at 168.4 yen ($1.65) per kg, after touching the highest since May 18 of 169.4 yen earlier in the session. “There was no fresh fundamental news to support the rally, but buying gathered momentum after the benchmark broke through a technical ceiling of 165 yen,” said Toshitaka Tazawa, analyst at Fujitomi Co.

The TOCOM futures, which set the tone for tyre rubber prices in Southeast Asia, have been stuck in a tight range of 145-165 yen since late May. The recent rise in commodity prices in China also helped boost risk appetite, a Tokyo-based dealer said.

“Now, it looks like TOCOM may try the 170-yen level although we expect the bull trend to be short-lived as the oversupply situation in Asia has not been fixed,” Tazawa said. The most-active rubber contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange for January delivery SNRcv1 rose 90 yuan to finish at 13,225 yuan ($1,982.40) per tonne. The front-month rubber contract on Singapore’s SICOM exchange for October delivery STFc1 last traded at 140.9 U.S. cents per kg, down 1.8 cent. Japanese stocks rallied and lifted Asian equities on Wednesday, while the yen weakened after the Bank of Japan surprised markets by adopting a target for long-term interest rates in an overhaul of its massive monetary stimulus programme.

Japanese financial markets will be closed on Thursday for a public holiday. ($1 = 101.7600 yen) ($1 = 6.6712 Chinese yuan)

(Reporting by Yuka Obayashi; Editing by Sunil Nair)

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