SINGAPORE: Japanese rubber futures inched higher on Thursday, tracking stronger domestic equities, although the gains were capped by losses in the Shanghai market amid continued concerns of a global economic slowdown.
The Osaka Exchange rubber contract for June delivery was up 0.1 yen, or 0.1%, at 222.1 yen ($1.68) per kg as of 0200 GMT. The rubber contract on the Shanghai futures exchange for May delivery was down 140 yuan, or 1.1%, at 12,950 yuan ($1,882) per tonne.
Japan’s benchmark Nikkei share average opened up 0.42%. Rubber demand sentiment has been mixed over the past month after China relaxed its strict COVID-19 curbs, which was met with a fresh wave of new infections, limiting industrial activity and consumption. Data from China shows that no new coronavirus variant has been found there, but also that the country under-represents how many people have died in a rapidly spreading outbreak, World Health Organization (WHO) officials said on Wednesday.