VEGOILS-Palm oil gains on supply concerns, ends week lower
* China's GDP up 7.6 pct, in line with market expectations
* Futures post 2.1 pct weekly loss on lower exports
* Palm oil to drop to 2,970 ringgit -technicals (Updates prices)
By Chew Yee Kiat
SINGAPORE, July 13 (Reuters) - Malaysian crude palm oil futures ended higher on Friday as concerns over tighter global oilseed supply came back into play, while traders were mostly relieved that China's gross domestic product data landed in line with forecasts.
The market shrugged off forecasts of weekend rain in parts of the U.S. Midwest, investors betting on lower soybean output after the U.S. Department of Agriculture cut yield estimates in its Thursday report.
China's economy grew 7.6 percent in the second quarter of 2012 from a year earlier, its slowest pace in three years and in line with a Reuters poll. Market players are now on the lookout for possible stimulus measures that could spur growth and commodity demand.
Benchmark September palm oil futures on the Bursa Malaysia Derivatives Exchange gained 1.8 percent to close at 3,065 ringgit ($963) per tonne.
Traded volumes stood at 33,372 lots of 25 tonnes each, higher than the usual 25,000 lots.
But over the week, palm oil futures still posted a 2.1 percent loss after three straight weeks of gains, as weaker Malaysian palm oil exports offset tighter June stocks reported by industry regulator Malaysian Palm Oil Board (MPOB).
"Although we see quite bullish MPOB data, the market is not responding. We will expect export numbers to continue to come down, it's just whether the numbers will come down smoothly or drastically," said Ker Chung Yang, commodities analyst with Phillip Futures in Singapore.
A bearish target at 2,970 ringgit per tonne remains intact for Malaysian palm oil FCPOc3, based on its wave pattern and a Fibonacci retracement analysis, according to Reuters market analyst Wang Tao.
But prices should find support from weather concerns in the United States with only small amounts of rain expected in some areas of the Midwest over the next week to 10 days, agricultural meteorologists said.
A lower soybean crop to be crushed into oil could shift more vegetable oil demand to the cheaper palm oil.
Market players are also on the lookout for a possible El Nino weather pattern in Southeast Asia as dry weather could cut palm oil output.
In terms of demand, palm oil investors will be waiting for the July 1-15 Malaysian export numbers on Monday for a clearer picture on consumption trends.
Some expect higher orders ahead of a slew of Asian festivals starting from Ramadan next week and with China and India celebrating key holidays from September to November.
Brent crude oil futures rose on Friday after second-quarter Chinese GDP data was roughly in line with expectations and on fresh attempts by the United States to crack down on Iranian crude exports.
In other vegetable oil markets, the most active U.S. soyoil for December delivery edged up 1.1 percent on tight supply concerns. The most active January 2013 soyoil contract on the Dalian Commodity Exchange gained 0.3 percent. Palm, soy and crude oil prices at 1004 GMT
Contract Month Last Change Low High Volume MY PALM OIL JUL2 0 +0.00 0 3000 0 MY PALM OIL AUG2 3059 +46.00 3012 3059 1185 MY PALM OIL SEP2 3065 +53.00 3015 3067 19692 CHINA PALM OLEIN JAN3 8040 +8.00 7966 8046 315616 CHINA SOYOIL JAN3 9642 +28.00 9574 9646 475562 CBOT SOY OIL DEC2 54.76 +0.58 54.11 54.78 6508 NYMEX CRUDE AUG2 86.78 +0.70 85.58 86.86 27416
Palm oil prices in Malaysian ringgit per tonne CBOT soy oil in U.S. cents per pound Dalian soy oil and RBD palm olein in Chinese yuan per tonne Crude in U.S. dollars per barrel ($1=3.184 Malaysian ringgit) (Editing by Jonathan Thatcher)
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