By Rahul Dhuri
MUMBAI – Rubber contracts on the Indian Commodity Exchange closed higher today as investors covered short positions after prices hit a three-week low of 13,200 rupees per 100 kg on Friday. The most-active March contract closed 0.6% higher at 13,300 rupees per 100 kg.
Open interest in the contract fell to 509 tn from 550 tn on Friday, indicating short covering.
Rubber futures on TOCOM extended Friday’s losses as a rise in novel coronavirus cases outside China raised concern over demand. The most-active August contract had hit a five-month low of 160.1 yen (about 108.25 rupees) per kg in early trade today.
The World Health Organization has raised its coronavirus risk assessment to “very high” but said it had yet to become a global pandemic.
However, the August contract ended 1.1% higher at 174 yen on concern over global supply, analysts said.
Price of the RSS-3 variety in Thailand fell $3.61 to $158.80 per 100 kg, Rubber Board data showed. In Malaysia, price of the SMR-20 variety fell $1.64 to $130.70 per 100 kg.
On the domestic front, natural rubber prices were largely unchanged in key markets of Kerala as tepid demand from stockists negated gains due to the persistent supply crunch, said local trader Biju Thomas.
In Kochi and Kottayam, the widely-traded RSS-4 variety was unchanged at 134-135 rupees per kg, traders said. Data from the Rubber Board showed that price of the commodity was unchanged at 134.50 rupees per kg in Kottayam. In Kochi, it was sold at 134.00 rupees per kg, down 0.50 rupee.
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 = 72.72 rupees
Edited by Subham Mitra