Oct. 29 (Bloomberg) -- Rubber increased amid optimism that improvement in the Chinese economy may boost demand from the world’s largest consumer.
The contract for delivery in April, which began trading yesterday on the Tokyo Commodity Exchange, gained 0.5 percent to settle at 261.2 yen a kilogram ($2,678 a metric ton).
Speculation grew that China may take additional steps to sustain growth in the world’s second-biggest economy as the Communist Party will hold a summit meeting in November, said Kazuhiko Saito, an analyst at broker Fujitomi Co. in Tokyo. China’s manufacturing strengthened more than forecast this month, data from HSBC Holdings Plc and Markit Economics showed Oct. 24.
“Futures were supported by optimism about Chinese demand,” he said by phone today.
China’s rubber industry urged the National Development and Reform Commission to scrap a 20 percent tax on natural rubber imports, the National Business Daily reported yesterday, citing unidentified people from tire companies as saying.
Crude rubber stockpiles held at Japanese warehouses fell 2.7 percent to 4,386 tons on Oct. 10, according to data today from the Rubber Trade Association of Japan.
Rubber for January delivery on the Shanghai Futures Exchange added 0.5 percent to close at 19,465 yuan ($3,197) a ton. Thai rubber free-on-board remained unchanged at 78.15 baht ($2.52) a kilogram today, according to the Rubber Research Institute of Thailand.
Thailand ruled out buying rubber from farmers at 100 baht per kilogram as it will distort the market, agriculture minister Yukol Limlamthong said yesterday after farmers in southern provinces, a key plantation area, staged a new round of protest. The government will maintain direct subsidy payments to farmers for production costs, Yukol said in a statement.
--With assistance from Supunnabul Suwannakij in Bangkok. Editors: Jarrett Banks, Brett Miller