Analysis: NR pricing takes one step forward, two steps back
London - Far East natural rubber traders painted a mixed picture in the August, with signs of improvement in Chinese markets overshadowed by some fairly sharp declines elsewhere.
On the Shanghai Futures Exchange, prices for the most heavily traded future RU1701 (January 2017), finished up at Yuan 12,392/tonne for the trading week ended 2 Sept. This was 1.6 percent above the level recorded for the last trading week of July (to 29 July).
On the Tokyo Commodity Exchange, back-month prices for TOCOM reference material RSS3 were at Yen152.0/kg, about 5.3 percent lower than at the end of July.
In Bangkok, ERJ's last NR pricing report pegged prices for RSS1 at £177.85/100kg and $182.95/100kg for RSS3, on 29 July - though pricing was already starting to wilt from these levels by early August.
Sure enough, scroll forward to 2 Sept and RSS1 was trading 7.8-percent lower at to $163.90/100kg, while RSS3 was down 12.2 percent at $160.55/100kg.
Traders in Kuala Lumpur defied this trend somewhat, with SMR20 selling at $131.50/100kg on 2 Sept - 3.3 percent above its level on 29 July.
Meanwhile, despite its limited success to date the International Rubber Tripartite Council has, apparently, not given up on efforts to revive NR prices by cutting back supply: having already removed 615 kilotonnes from the market since March.
Council members Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand will remove an extra 85 kilotonnes from their combined exports between September and December, according to a Reuters report posted on the ANRPC (Association of Natural Rubber Producing Countries) website.