August 18, 2008


Monday: China soybean futures settle up sharply; coming off a bottom


Soybean futures traded on China's Dalian Commodity Exchange settled sharply higher Monday as many traders feel the bottom has been reached following a recent tumble.


The benchmark January 2009 soybean contract settled RMB116 higher at RMB4,180 a metric tonne, or up 2.9%, after trading in a wide range of RMB4,083-RMB4,238/tonne.


New funds have been entering the market since prices hit low levels around RMB4,000/tonne, analysts said.


The downward momentum hasn't been strong since the benchmark contract touched a four-month low of RMB3,853/tonne on Aug. 12, and the lower prices may have raised interest in consumption, said Gao Yanrong, an analyst at Dalu Futures.


Open interest was at 397,932 lots, up 2,824 lots from Friday.


A tight overall global soybean supply and initial concerns about a plague of insects in the northeast Heilongjiang province, the major soybean producing area, may have helped to support the prices as well, said some analysts.


However, later in the session there was news that the plague was under control and may have only a limited impact on actual soybean output.


Huang Xiao, an analyst at Capital Futures, expects soybean prices to continue to rebound in the coming weeks with the likely bottom already in place.


Soyoil futures, palm oil futures and soymeal futures settled higher.


Corn futures settled lower.


Monday's settlement prices in yuan a metric tonne and volume for all contracts in lots (one lot is equivalent to 10 tonnes):

Contract        Settlement        Price        Change        Volume

Soybean        Jan 2009          4,180        Up 116        974,096

Corn              Jan 2009          1,732        Dn  10        408,144

Soymeal        Jan 2009           3,501        Up 124       966,830

Palm Oil         Jan 2009           7,550        Up  62         22,304

Soyoil            Jan 2009           8,794        Up 154       449,014

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