Rubber market to trade range-bound with upside bias next week

By BERNAMA / Pic BLOOMBERG

KUALA LUMPUR • The Malaysian rubber market is expected to trade range-bound with an upward bias next week, as demand is expected to strengthen following stock-up activities.

Denis Low, the immediate past president of the  Malaysian Rubber Glove Manufacturers Association, said there will be sporadic buying and replenishment activities ahead of the unusually early wintering of rubber trees.

“Normally, the rubber wintering season take places at end-February until end-April. The uncertainty caused by such intermittent wintering instead of blanket wintering due to climate change may have a negative impact on the supply side, thus causing the price to be volatile,” he told Bernama.

As such, Low expects the latex yield to be affected by about 40 per cent to 50 per cent.

He said the uncertainties in oil prices and the volatile US dollar also may have an impact on the rubber prices and demand as well.

On a weekly recap, the market closed higher, supported by surging benchmark crude oil prices amid quiet trading in the regional rubber futures markets due to the absence of Chinese traders following the week-long Lunar New Year holidays.

On a weekly basis, the Malaysian Rubber Board’s (MRB) reference physical price for Standard Malaysian Rubber (SMR) 20 increased four sen to 723.0 sen a kilogramme (kg), while latex-in-bulk rose 11 sen to 600.5 sen per kg.

At 5 pm on Friday, MRB’s closing price for SMR 20 stood at 723.5 sen a kg, while latex-in-bulk was at 600.0 sen a kg.