Rubber declined for a fourth day to the lowest in almost three weeks as stockpiles jumped to the highest level in more than two years in China, the world’s biggest consumer of the commodity used in tires.
Rubber for delivery in June fell as much as 1 percent to 308.30 yen a kilogram ($3,495 a metric ton), the lowest level since Dec. 28, on the Tokyo Commodity Exchange and traded at 301.6 yen by 1:11 p.m. local time.
Natural rubber inventories climbed 1,824 tons to 101,482 tons last week, the highest level since March 2010, based on a survey of nine warehouses in Shanghai, Shandong, Yunnan, Hainan and Tianjin, according to data from the Shanghai Futures Exchange.
“Hefty stockpiles in China are pressuring the market,” said Kazuhiko Saito, an analyst at broker Fujitomi Co. in Tokyo. Investors are waiting for China’s industrial production data tomorrow to set direction for next week, Saito said.
China will release data tomorrow on fourth-quarter gross domestic product, December industrial production and retail sales and full-year fixed-asset investment. Economic growth probably accelerated to 7.8 percent in the October-December period from a year earlier, up from a three-year low in the previous quarter, according to a Bloomberg News survey.
Rubber for delivery in May was down 0.2 percent at 25,440 yuan ($4,089) a ton on the Shanghai Futures Exchange. Thai rubber free-on-board yesterday dropped for a third day, falling 2 percent to 99.20 baht ($3.32) a kilogram, according to the Rubber Research Institute of Thailand.
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