KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian palm oil futures rose more than 1 percent on Tuesday evening, tracking related edible oils and supported by improving export demand. The benchmark palm oil contract for March delivery on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives Exchange rose 1.2 percent to 2,532 ringgit ($630.16) a tonne at the end of the trading day. The market is also reacting to strong exports, said another trader in Kuala Lumpur. Palm oil shipments from Malaysia, the world’s second-largest producer behind Indonesia, gained 6.7 percent month on month in December on stronger demand from Europe and India, according to data from cargo surveyor Intertek Testing Services (ITS). Another cargo surveyor, Societe Generale de Surveillance, reported a 9.8 percent gain in exports for the same period. The market is also forecasting gains in demand from key consumer China as it stocks up ahead of the Lunar New Year celebrations when palm oil consumption is higher for cooking purposes In related oils, the March soybean oil contract on the Chicago Board of Trade saw strong overnight gains of 1.7 percent on Friday before closing for public holidays.
The May soybean oil on the Dalian Commodity Exchange rose 2 percent, while the Dalian January palm oil contract was up 1.8 percent. Palm oil prices track the performances of other edible oils that compete in the global vegetable oils market.