Thursday, April 7, 2011

20110407 1830 FCPO EOD Daily Chart Study.

FCPO closed : 3322, changed : -54 points, volume : higher.
Bollinger band reading : correction range bound downside biased.
MACD Histrogram : turned lower, buyer taking profit.
Support : 3300, 3270, 3250, 3200 level.
Resistance : 3350, 3420, 3450, 3470 level.
Comment :
FCPO closed recorded loss with increasing volume transacted after news on Reuters survey showing higher production and stock level with just tiny improvement on export while soy oil price trading little higher after overnight closed recorded small loss.
Daily chart formed a down bar candle closing below middle Bollinger band with the bandwidth continue to narrowing after market opened gap down little lower, taking few upward steps and slide downward traded range bound and closed near the low of the day.
Chart reading call for a correction range bound downside biased market development possibly testing lower support level near lower Bollinger band.
When to buy : buy at support or weakness with quick cut loss and profit target.
When to sell : sell at resistant or strength with quick cut loss and profit target.

20110407 1817 FKLI EOD Daily Chart Study.

FKLI closed : 1560 changed : +6.5 points, volume : lower.
Bollinger band reading : correction range bound upside biased.
MACD Histrogram : getting lower, buyer profit taking.
Support : 1550, 1540, 1530, 1515 evel.
Resistance : 1565, 1580, 1590, 1600 level.
Comment :
FKLI closed recorded gains with lower volume participation doing about 2 points discount compare to cash market while regional market having mixed development as market awaits European Central Bank interest rate announcement.
Daily chart formed an up doji bar candle positioned nearer to upper Bollinger band level after market opened gap up, dip little lower before surge higher to closed near the high of the day. 
Chart reading suggesting a correction range bound upside biased market development possibly testing higher resistance level near upper Bollinger band as price managed to closed  above of previous high of 1557.5 but the only issue here will be lack of volume transacted for the past 1 week.
When to buy : buy at support or weakness with quick cut loss and profit target.
When to sell : sell at resistant or strength with quick cut loss and profit target.

20110407 1627 Global Makret & Commodities Related News.

Euro near multi-month highs before ECB; Nikkei up
SINGAPORE, April 7 (Reuters) - The euro clung near a 14-month high against the dollar ahead of an expected euro zone interest rate rise on Thursday, while gold held close to a record scaled on the back of the U.S. currency's weakness and inflation worries.
"The yen has been falling on expectations of diverging monetary policies between Japan, the United States and the euro zone," said Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ analyst Teppei Ino.

Oil slips below $122 on concern high prices crimping demand
SINGAPORE, April 7 (Reuters) - Brent crude dipped  in Asian trade after five straight days of gains, slipping below $122 a barrel on concern that rising prices will hurt demand from the United States and China, the world's two largest oil consumers.
"U.S. demand will be challenged as higher retail prices and little wage growth lead to a rising burden of gasoline spending in U.S households' budget and disposable income,"  Harry Tchilinguirian, head of commodity markets strategy at BNP Paribas, said in an overnight note.

Corn stays near record peak, U.S. data eyed
SYDNEY, April 7 (Reuters) - Chicago corn futures steadied near record highs, as thin U.S. stocks and expectations of firm Chinese demand kept declines in check ahead of key U.S. data later this week.
"Corn prices will certainly remain elevated until the U.S. finds a way to ration demand" to deal with tight supplies, said Victor Thianpiriya, agricultural commodity analyst at ANZ in Melbourne.

Palm oil body criticises Malaysia's IOI for environment, social damage
KUALA LUMPUR, April 7 (Reuters) - An industry body for eco-friendly palm oil has censured Malaysia's second largest palm oil planter, IOI Corp , alleging it has drained peatlands and felled forests on Borneo island to expand and that it could face further sanctions.
The censure follows complaints by green groups over IOI's environmental practices in the Malaysia's Borneo state of Sarawak, including a protracted land dispute with a local community.

Brazil soy yields, area point to record output-govt
SAO PAULO, April 6 (Reuters) - Brazil's soybean crop surged deeper into record territory in the government's seventh forecast, as improved yields and greater planted area more than offset losses due to excess rains in some states.
Brazil's 2010/11 soybean crop is seen at a record 72.2 million tonnes, up sharply from a forecast of 70.3 million tonnes in March, government crop supply agency Conab said on Wednesday.

Mexico sees record 10/11 sugar exports on US demand
MEXICO CITY, April 6 (Reuters) - Mexico sugar exports will soar to record highs this season as cane growers and millers aim to meet increased demand from the United States, which is expecting a supply squeeze.
Carlos Blackaller, head of the national cane growers union, said sugar exports in the 2010/11 growing year would reach 1.3 million tonnes, slightly above U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) forecasts of 1.232 million tonnes.

Brazil cocoa arrivals slow in lull between harvests
SAO PAULO, April 6 (Reuters) - Brazil's cocoa arrivals eased in the last week and are unlikely to pick up much until the mid-crop harvest gets under way in May, cocoa analyst Thomas Hartmann said.
Total Brazilian cocoa arrivals, including imports, reached 3.95 million 60-kg bags from May 1, 2010 to April 3, up 16 percent from that same period in the last season, data from the Bahia Commercial Association showed.

Copper eases in London, up in Shanghai; Rio bullish on demand
SINGAPORE, April 7 (Reuters) - Copper prices edged lower  in London, while Shanghai futures rose 0.4 percent, with sentiment underpinned after Rio Tinto said it expected a market deficit of half a million tonnes in 2011 and shortages through 2013.

U.S. February aluminum production up 7.2 pct yr/yr
NEW YORK, April 6 (Reuters) - The annual rate of primary U.S. aluminum production rose 7.2 percent to 1,819,290 tonnes in February, up from 1,697,850 tonnes in February 2010 and 1.9 percent higher than January's annual rate of 1,784,850 tonnes, the Aluminum Association said in its latest report.
Actual production for February came to 139,562 tonnes, up from 130,246 tonnes in February 2010 but a decline  from the 151,590 tonnes produced in January, the association said.

Gold slips from record; ETF holdings lowest since May
SINGAPORE, April 7 (Reuters) - Gold ticked lower to hover below a record on Thursday ahead of an expected euro zone interest rate hike, while ETF holdings dropped to their lowest in almost a year as investors shifted some of their money into other markets.
"Moms and dads are moving out, out of gold and into the equities. But our expectations for gold moving higher has more to do with inflationary concerns, I think, particularly in China," said Jonathan Barratt, managing director of Commodity Broking Services.

20110407 1347 March 2011 Palm Oil Survey by Reuters.

Reuters Palm Oil Survey :
March 2011 Export seen up nearly 1% from Feb 2011
March 2011 Output seen up 16% from Feb 2011
March 2011 Stocks seen up 5.4% at 1.56 million tommes from Feb 2011

20110407 1128 Global Market & Commodities Related News.

GLOBAL MARKETS: Yen pressured ahead of BOJ, Tokyo shares gain
SINGAPORE, April 7 (Reuters) - The yen stuck near multi-month lows against the dollar and euro on Thursday ahead of a Bank of Japan policy meeting decision that may signal further easing, and Tokyo shares rose as investors bought stocks sold off in the previous two sessions.  Brent crude oil eased off a two-and-a-half year peak struck amid worries about war in Libya and unrest in the Middle East, and gold sat below a record scaled on Wednesday -- in part due to concerns about inflation driven by rising energy prices.

Oil : Oil hits 2-1/2-year peak; gains seen slowing
NEW YORK, April 6 (Reuters) - Brent crude oil prices rose to a 2-1/2-year high above $123 a barrel on Wednesday before erasing the majority of gains in volatile trade as market players fretted the recent rally was overdone. Brent has risen for five straight days to climb more than $7 a barrel, but the gain of just 8 cents on Wednesday was the smallest yet, with prices finishing more than $1 below the high of $123.37 a barrel.

NATURAL GAS: US natgas ends below support, further drop possible
NEW YORK, April 6 (Reuters) - U.S. natural gas futures ended lower for a fourth straight day on Wednesday, with a front-month close below key moving average support possibly ending the uptrend that began in early March. "Not only did we drop below the 100-day, but we also broke the 200-day, which is a strong technical signal that the market may have peaked," Gene McGillian at Tradition Energy said, adding there was a good chance prices would drop below $4.

EURO COAL: Prices rebound $2 in line with oil's gain
LONDON, April 6 (Reuters) - European and South African physical coal prices on Wednesday recovered the $2 a tonne lost earlier in the week, boosted by oil's rise to a 30-month high, traders and utilities said. "Prices came off on Tuesday but the market's bounced back now although few people are buying in Europe and mostly only discounted, low-quality coal in Asia," one trader said.

COMMODITIES: Gold hits new record; CRB 1-month high
NEW YORK, April 6 (Reuters) - Gold hit record highs for a second straight day on Wednesday and oil soared to fresh 2-1/2 year highs, sparking fears of inflation that could hurt some of the world's most dependable economies. "High inflation is a direct threat to stable and inclusive growth since rising domestic prices can lead to social tensions," the ADB said in a report.

Oil to soar above $130 later in 2011
NEW YORK/LONDON, April 6 (Reuters) - Oil prices will soar above $130 a barrel by late 2011, a new Reuters poll found, and  one in five traders said they expected oil to hit $150 this year, levels some economists say could trigger recession.
With no end in sight to the unrest in the Middle East and North Africa, the majority of the 32 major oil traders, bank analysts and hedge fund managers surveyed by Reuters since Monday said they expect oil prices to resume their climb later this year after a short-term retreat.

High oil price harming economic growth-IEA
ABU DHABI, April 6 (Reuters) - The current price of oil is harming global economic growth and is a mounting concern for consuming nations, the deputy executive director of the International Energy Agency (IEA) said on Wednesday.
Oil has surged to its highest since 2008, boosted by strong demand growth, worries over the stability of major crude producers in the Middle East, and tighter supplies that are cutting into inventories, Richard Jones said in an interview.

20110407 1105 Global Economic Related News.

U.S: Government closure would delay economic data releases. A partial shutdown of the federal government forced by the budget impasse in Congress would delay release of U.S. economic data, making it more difficult to determine the influence on growth of the recent jump in commodity prices. About 800,000 government workers would be affected by a shutdown, an administration official said. That would include staff at the Labor and Commerce Departments who compile information on everything from consumer prices and the unemployment rate to retail sales and trade. (Source: Bloomberg)

E.U: Labor productivity increased in March at the strongest pace since July, Markit Economics said. The seasonally adjusted EU Productivity purchasing managers index increased to 54.2 last month from 53.9 in February, Markit said in a report. "The expansion was again broad-based by nation and industry," it said. (Source: Bloomberg)

China: Will increase gasoline, diesel, jet fuel prices, according to the National Development and Reform Commission. The ceiling for gasoline prices will rise by CNY 500 (USD 76.40) a metric ton and for diesel prices by CNY 400, the nation's top planning agency said in a statement on its website. The cost of No. 3 jet fuel will rise by CNY 500 a ton to CNY 6,840, it said in a separate statement. (Source: Bloomberg)

Taiwan: Consumer prices rose by the most in four months in March as food and transportation costs increased, supporting the case for the central bank to raise borrowing costs again. The consumer price index climbed 1.41% YoY, compared with a 1.33% YoY advance in February, the statistics bureau said in Taipei. (Source: Bloomberg)

Australia: Home-Loan approvals declined for a second month in February as floods and a cyclone disrupted the housing market on the nation's east coast. The number of loans granted to build or buy houses and apartments dropped 5.6% MoM from January, when they fell a revised 6.3% MoM, the statistics bureau said in Sydney. (Source: Bloomberg)

US: Service industries in US expand less than forecast on higher fuel costs
Service industries in the US grew less than forecast in March, showing higher fuel costs are raising concern sales will cool. The Institute for Supply Management’s index of non- manufacturing companies fell to 57.3 from 59.7 in February, lower than the 59.5 median forecasts of economists surveyed by Bloomberg News. Readings greater than 50 signal growth. Unrest in the Arab world has caused gasoline prices to climb to the highest level in more than two years, representing a headwind for consumer spending, while the aftermath of the disaster in Japan may disrupt supplies to American factories. Minutes of the Federal Reserve’s meeting last month, which took place before the latest run-up in prices, showed policy makers were divided over when to begin removing record stimulus. (Bloomberg)

US: Lockhart says FED unlikely to tighten us monetary policy before year-end
Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta President Dennis Lockhart said he doesn’t expect the central bank to tighten US monetary policy by the end of the year with inflation low and the economic recovery fragile. “I wouldn’t rule it out entirely, but at this stage I personally am not leaning in the direction of thinking that is absolutely required,” Lockhart said to reporters today during an Atlanta Fed conference at Stone Mountain, Georgia. (Bloomberg)

UK: UK manufacturing production unexpectedly stalls, casts doubt on rebound
UK manufacturing growth unexpectedly stalled in February as declining production of goods from chemicals to plastics dented the industrial recovery. Factory output was unchanged from January, when it rose 0.9%, the Office for National Statistics said today in London. The median forecast of 26 economists in a Bloomberg News survey was a 0.6% increase. Overall industrial production unexpectedly slumped by 1.2% as oil output fell. The report casts doubt on the strength of the economy’s rebound from a contraction in the fourth quarter at a time when higher raw-material costs threaten to squeeze manufacturers’ margins. The Bank of England may maintain its emergency stimulus program tomorrow to support the recovery during the government’s budget squeeze. (Bloomberg)

Portugal: Seeks EU bailout, joining Greece, Ireland
Portugal will seek a bailout from the European Union after the nation’s political crisis helped push borrowing costs to record levels and forced it to become the third euro-region country to seek a rescue. “I tried everything but we came to a moment that not taking this decision would bring risks we can’t afford,” Prime Minister Jose Socrates said in a televised statement from Lisbon late yesterday. “The government decided to make the European Commission a request for financial aid.” Portugal is seeking a rescue that may be worth as much as EUR75bn (USD107bn), according to two European officials with knowledge of the situation. Bond yields have surged since Socrates offered to resign on 23 Mar after parliament rejected proposed budget cuts, leaving him in charge of a caretaker government with limited powers until a 5 June election. (Bloomberg)

China: Swaps signal further rate increases adding to Yuan pressure: China credit
The cost of fixing borrowing costs in China suggests policy makers will raise interest rates at least once more this year as food and fuel costs surge, adding pressure on the Yuan to strengthen. The five-year non-deliverable swap rate jumped 26 basis points in the past three weeks to 4.23%, after a report showed a higher-than-forecast inflation rate of 4.9% in February. The People’s Bank of China’s latest increase was announced yesterday before an 15 Apr report that will show consumer prices climbed 5.2% in March, according to the median estimate in a Bloomberg News survey of nine economists. (Bloomberg)

20110407 1104 Malaysia Corporate Related News.

KLCI chart reading :
correction range bound upside biased.

Auto parts supply chain woes
The disruption to the automotive industry supply chain caused by Japan’s earthquake and tsunami could be more serious than expected for local players. It is learnt that given the seriousness of the situation, officials from Japan’s Daihatsu Motor Co will meet with its component vendors for Perusahaan Otomobil Kedua SB (Perodua) next week to explain the implications of possible supply disruption and provide an update on the scenario ahead. Meanwhile, industry sources said Perodua would be briefing some of its dealers today that it would possibly delay the launch of its replacement model for Myvi. (Financial Daily)

Masterskill to set up facility in Indonesia
Masterskill Education Group Bhd, the operator of Masterskill University College of Health Sciences, intends to open a campus in Indonesia soon in a move to diversify geographically, sources said. The education group would form a JV with Indonesia-based hospital owner PT Sejahteraraya Anugrahjaya (PTSA) for the venture, according to sources. Under the plan, which is in its preliminary stages, the new campus would be able to enroll about 20,000 students for each semester, said sources. (Financial Daily)

Tan Chong taps luxury car segment
Tan Chong Motor Holdings Bhd is tapping the luxury vehicle segment with the proposed distribution and sale of Infiniti vehicles in Malaysia. The automaker announced yesterday it had incorporated a company called Inspired Motor Sdn Bhd (IMSB) to undertake the proposed distribution and sale of Infiniti vehicles. In an announcement to Bursa Malaysia, Tan Chong said its wholly owned unit Edaran Tan Chong Motor SB (ETCM) holds a 70% equity interest while Auto Dunia SB (ADSB) owns the remaining 30%. (Financial Daily)

RHB aims to seal deal for Indonesia's Bank Mestika in July
RHB Banking Group, the country's fourth largest bank by assets, aims to finally seal the deal for Indonesia's PT Bank Mestika Dharma in July, after numerous rounds of delays. The group's listed entity, via RHB Capital Bhd (RHBCap), first announced plans to buy 80% of Bank Mestika for some RM1.16bn in Oct 2009. However, the plan ran into delays due to queries from the Indonesian central bank relating to disclosure as well as structure of the banking group. Since then, changes have been made, with RHB Bank, which is an entity of RHBCap, now being proposed as the party to undertake the purchase. (BT)

Berjaya Food replies Bursa query
In a statement on Bursa yesterday, Berjaya Food Bhd, the operator of the Kenny Rogers Roasters chain of restaurants, is not aware of any reason for the unusual market activity in relation to the sharp increase in price and high volume of the company’s shares. In the said announcement, the company re-iterated that it is not aware of any current corporate developments, rumour, or any other possible explanation to account for the unusual market activity. (Bursa Malaysia)

IOI Corp under scrutiny
IOI Corp Bhd, the country’s second biggest listed palm-oil company, is being scrutinised by an industry group following allegations about land disputes and illegal deforestation. IOI was given 28 days to respond to the allegations of land disputes and illegal deforestation. IOI was given 28 days to respond to the allegations, the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil said in a statement on its website. (StarBiz)

Trading in Mamee shares halted from 9am Thursday until 5pm Friday
Trading in the securities of Mamee-Double Decker (M) Bhd securities will be suspended from 9am on Thursday, April until 5pm on Friday, 8 April at the request of the company pending an announcement. Mamee said on Wednesday, 6 April that Bursa Malaysia Securities Berhad had approved its request for suspension of trading in its securities until 5pm on Friday. “The request for suspension is in view of the pending release of an announcement relating to a material corporate exercise,” it said. (Financial Daily)

Perodua: MyVi replacement model launch to be delayed. Perodua would possibly delay the launch of its replacement model for the MyVi due to disruption to the automotive industry supply chain caused by Japan's earthquake and tsunami. (Source: The Edge Financial Daily)

Proton: Closing in on Perodua, gap in vehicle sales narrows. Proton is edging closer to regaining its top spot in the car market, five years after losing that position to Perodua. Sales figures show that the gap in vehicle sales between national carmakers Proton Holdings Bhd and Perusahaan Otomobil Kedua Sdn Bhd (Perodua) is narrowing rapidly. (Source: The Star)

Dijaya: Ventures into hospitality. Dijaya Corp Bhd is planning to build a 50-storey hotel-cum-residential block, W Hotel costing RM750m on a plot of land on Jalan Ampang, where the historical Bok House used to sit. (Source: Business Times)

BHIC: To double order book. Shipbuilder Boustead Heavy Industries Corp Bhd (BHIC) is expecting to at least double its current order book of RM1.2b and beef up its repair and maintenance segment this year. (Source: The Star)   

20110407 1026 Renewables Energy Related News.

Hyundai Heavy wins 16 MW wind power order from Finland
SEOUL, April 6 (Reuters) - Hyundai Heavy Industries Co Ltd  has won a 16 megawatt wind power project order from Finnish Power, the Korean company said on Wednesday.
The world's No.1 shipyard said in a statement that it would supply eight 2 MW wind turbines for a wind power farm in Finland, construction of which is scheduled to be completed in April 2012.

Germany plans multi-billion euro power plant revamp
FRANKFURT/HANOVER, Germany, April 4 (Reuters) - German firms plan to build or modernise 51 big power plants by 2019 as old capacity closes and Germany prepares scenarios likely to speed withdrawal from nuclear energy, industry group BDEW said on Monday. In addition to the 51, there are 15 other projects where the date of commissioning is not yet clear, BDEW said. It estimated that the 66 projects, taken together, involved investments of 50 billion euros ($71.11 billion).

Japan nuclear crisis spotlights prospects for renewables
SINGAPORE, March 31 (Reuters) - The threat of a meltdown at nuclear reactors in Japan has prompted scrutiny of renewable power options by many nations as growing public unease pushes top consumers to either go slow or halt any immediate expansion in nuclear power.
Japan, one of the world's top nuclear power generators and a key advocate of the technology, plans a review of policy to tap sources such as solar. China too may double its target for photovoltaic capacity over the next five years, and Taiwan is studying cutting nuclear output. Germany and Switzerland are either shutting older reactors or suspending approvals.

New technology makes hydrogen more viable car fuel
LONDON, Mar 31 (Reuters Life!) - A new technology that allows hydrogen to be stored in a cheap and practical way, could make its widespread use as a carbon-free alternative to petrol a reality, according to its developers.
The technology is based on a new way of producing nano-fibres from hydrides, materials that soak up hydrogen like a sponge, and then encapsulating them in tiny plastic beads so small they behave like a liquid.

Vestas surprises with 7 MW offshore wind turbine
LONDON, March 30 (Reuters) - Danish wind turbine maker Vestas  unveiled a new giant 7-megawatt offshore turbine on Wednesday and said it expected it to be in serial production in early 2015.
Vestas, the world's biggest wind turbine manufacturer by market share, had only been expected to unveil a 6 MW turbine, not the towering 135-metre (443 feet) 7 MW unit, with its rotor diameter of 164 metres.

Hevel sees Russia solar market hotting up
MILAN, March 30 (Reuters) - Hevel Solar, building Russia's first thin film solar module manufacturing plant, sees its main market at home where renewable energy is set to grow, its senior executive said.
It plans to start up the plant in central Russia, some 600 km away from Moscow, early next year and reach full production capacity of 130 megawatts of photovoltaic panels a year in July 2012, Dmitry Pryakhin, deputy chief executive in charge of business development, said on Wednesday.

Botswana sees renewable feed-in tariffs for 2012
JOHANNESBURG, March 30 (Reuters) - Botswana will introduce renewable energy feed-in tariffs for electricity generation by March next year, a senior government official said on Wednesday.
Under such a scheme, renewable energy suppliers are paid for generating electricity to the country's national grid.
Botswana imports 72 percent of its power from South Africa state-owned power utility Eskom and has a total electricity demand of about 400 megawatts.

China renewable sector eyes govt support amid nuke safety fears
BEIJING, March 30 (Reuters) - Officials from China's renewable energy sector called for more government support on Wednesday as an ongoing reactor crisis in Japan put Beijing under increasing pressure to scale back its  ambitious nuclear building plans.
Speaking at an industry conference, they said the promotion of clean energy sources such as wind, solar or hydropower could help fill the supply gap that might arise were China's nuclear programme to slow as a result of safety concerns.

Spain regulator halts subsidies for 350 solar plants
MADRID, March 30 (Reuters) - Spanish energy sector regulator CNE suspended subsidies for 350 solar plants with irregularities in their registration as electricity generators.
CNE has investigated 1,001 solar plants of a total of 8,201 it will probe, indicating that one in three plants it has looked at have not registered themselves properly as having the necessary installations to generate electricity. THe suspension was announced in a statement late on Tuesday. 

20110407 1025 Biofuels Related News.

Biotech Deinove eyes U.S., Brazil ethanol
PARIS, April 5 (Reuters) - French green biotech firm Deinove , which hopes to use a 4 billion year old bacterium to develop the fuel of the future, is eyeing new projects in the United States and Brazil, its chief executive told Reuters.
The company is talks with a large U.S. ethanol maker and with Tereos Internacional , a Brazil-based unit of France's Tereos group, to develop a bioethanol based not only on food but also on a bacterium named deinococcus, discovered in a U.S. corned beef tin in 1956, Deinove CEO Jacques Biton said.

DDGs: Ethanol's overlooked source of food supply:Maguire
--Gavin Maguire is a Reuters market analyst. The views expressed are his own. To get his real-time views on the market, please join the Global Ags Forum. --
CHICAGO, April 4 (Reuters) -Ethanol producers often get much of the blame for driving the price of corn to its current multi-year high levels due to that industry's strong usage of corn to make fuel.
But critics overlook the growing production and distribution of Dried Distiller's Grains (DDGs), a by-product of ethanol output used in animal feeds as an alternative to corn. Lax reporting of DDG sales and shipments make it hard to quantify the exact degree of corn displacement by DDGs, but with DDG output projected to be more than 40 million short tons in 2011 - or the equivalent of over 1 billion bushels of corn - their supply contribution to the feed industry is substantial and worth tracking.

GdF eyes biomass plants in Bulgaria
SOFIA, April 4 (Reuters) - France's GDF Suez  is considering investing 100 million euros ($142.2 million) in building biomass power plants in four Bulgarian towns, Agriculture Minister Miroslav Naidenov said on Monday.
GDF Suez has 695 MW in biomass-fuelled power plant capacity mainly in the United States and Brazil. Last year it said it would build what it called the world's largest biomass plant in Poland.

US biodiesel makers rap EU trade tariff extension
BRUSSELS, April 1 (Reuters) - U.S. biodiesel makers said on Friday that a European Union decision to extend tariffs on imported biodiesel blends was illegal, fuelling a transatlantic battle for a share in the world's renewable energy market.
On Thursday, EU government representatives backed a plan to extend tariffs on evidence that U.S. exporters have either been smuggling biodiesel to Europe via Canada or mixing it into weaker blends to avoid high tariffs at EU borders, diplomatic, EU and industry sources said.

Dominion unit says 3 power plants to switch to biomass
April 1 (Reuters) - Major power producer Dominion Resources Inc's  Virginia unit said it plans to convert three power stations from using coal to biomass.
If the conversion is approved, the plants could begin burning biomass in 2013, it said in a statement.
The company said the total economic impact over the 30-year life of the stations would be more than $350 million, including $30 million in local taxes and $180 million for the creation of more than 300 hundred jobs in the forestry and trucking industries.

EU states back extending U.S. biodiesel duties-sources
BRUSSELS, March 31 (Reuters) - European Union governments on Thursday approved the extension of import duties on U.S.-made biodiesel after hearing evidence that U.S. exporters had been evading EU tariffs by shipping via Canada, sources said.
Representatives of EU countries gave majority backing to extend duties worth up to about 400 euros per tonne to biodiesel arriving from Canada, the sources said.
The vote follows a year of investigations prompted by suspicions that U.S. exporters were smuggling their goods into the EU via third countries to avoid the tariffs.

Cargill acquires Fort Dodge corn wet mill ethanol facility
March 31 (Reuters) - Privately held food producer Cargill   said it purchased Tate & Lyle's  corn wet mill ethanol plant located in Fort Dodge, Iowa.
The plant has the capacity to grind 150,000 bushels of corn per day and produce 115 million gallons of ethanol per year.
The facility is expected to create over 100 jobs and help provide an alternative market for local producers.
The agribusiness giant said it hopes to replicate the success it has had at other bio-refinery campuses at Fort Dodge.

US 2011 ethanol exports seen at 500 mln gal - CHS
SAO PAULO, Brazil, March 30 (Reuters) - U.S. ethanol exports in 2011 should surpass last year's record high as the fuel remains relatively cheaper than Brazilian cane-based ethanol in external markets, a director at the largest U.S. farm co-op, CHS, said on Wednesday.
Shipments are expected to total at least 500 million gallons (1.9 billion liters), up from 400 million in 2010, with no less than 200 million gallons going to Europe, said John Litterio, director of renewable fuels sales at CHS .
"U.S. has excess capacity at least in the next few years to dedicate to international markets," he said on the sidelines of a F.O. Licht sugar and ethanol seminar.

Ethanol producers overlook climbing stocks: Maguire
CHICAGO, March 30 (Reuters) - U.S. ethanol inventories crept to nine-month highs last week despite a reduction in ethanol output and the fact that ethanol prices declined to their lowest level relative to gasoline in close to a year.
But while continuing rises in stockpiles may undermine the fundamental appeal of the ethanol market, industry participants look set to remain committed to maintaining sturdy output levels as production margins edge higher and industry sentiment remains upbeat on expectations for higher demand from fuel blenders over the coming months.

Oregon raising biodiesel requirement
KANSAS CITY, Mo., March 30 (Reuters) - Oregon will soon become the second U.S. state to require most diesel fuel to contain at least 5 percent biodiesel, a move expected to generate about 25 million gallons of biodiesel demand annually.
The change, an increase from a 2 percent biodiesel requirement, takes effect April 1.
Oregon's "B5" requirement was triggered when the in-state production capacity reached 15 million gallons.

Brazil top for biofuel investment, but more needed
SAO PAULO, March 29 (Reuters) - Brazil needs to invest more in biofuel production despite ranking as the No. 1 destination for investment in renewables, to meet higher future demand, analysts F.O. Licht and an industry official said on Tuesday.
Brazil drew one quarter of the $5.6 billion invested worldwide in biofuel production plants in 2010, or $1.76 billion. Biofuels projects in the United States and European Union attracted $1.13 billion and $893 million respectively. 

20110407 1019 Global Market Related News.

DJIA chart reading : upside biased.

Portugal Seeks EU Bailout, Joining Greece, Ireland (Source: Bloomberg)
Portugal will seek a bailout from the European Union after the nation’s political crisis helped push borrowing costs to record levels and forced it to become the third euro-region country to need rescuing.

Trichet Reticence Ignored as Investors Forecast ECB to Keep Raising Rates (Source: Bloomberg)
European Central Bank President Jean-Claude Trichet says he isn’t embarking on a series of interest-rate increases. Investors don’t believe him.

China Will Increase Gasoline, Diesel, Jet Fuel Prices Today (Source: Bloomberg)
China, Asia’s biggest oil consumer, will raise retail gasoline and diesel prices today after global crude costs increased, according to the National Development and Reform Commission.

Government Shutdown Would Delay Release of U.S. Economic Data (Source: Bloomberg)
A partial shutdown of the federal government forced by the budget impasse in Congress would delay release of U.S. economic data, making it more difficult to determine the influence on growth of the recent jump in commodity prices. About 800,000 government workers would be affected by a shutdown, an administration official said today. That would include staff at the Labor and Commerce Departments who compile information on everything from consumer prices and the unemployment rate to retail sales and trade.

Japan Plugs Radioactive Leak, Takes Steps to Prevent Explosion (Source: Bloomberg)
Tokyo Electric Power Co. prepared to inject nitrogen into reactors to avoid a possible explosion at its stricken nuclear power plant after succeeding in stopping highly radioactive water leaking into the sea.

U.K. Manufacturing Production Unexpectedly Stalls, Casts Doubt on Rebound (Source: Bloomberg)
U.K. manufacturing growth unexpectedly stalled in February as declining production of goods from chemicals to plastics dented the industrial recovery.

U.K. Home Prices Little Changed as Inflation, Income Squeeze Limit Demand (Source: Bloomberg)
U.K. house prices were little changed in March as uncertainty about the strength of the recovery and a squeeze on incomes from accelerating inflation deterred buyers.

Bernanke May Have to Overcome Fed Split on Maintaining Stimulus Past June (Source: Bloomberg)
Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke may have to overcome divisions among policy makers should he seek to maintain record stimulus past June, minutes of the Fed’s March 15 meeting indicate.

Asian Stocks Rise After Yen Falls, Gold Price Extends Record; Canon Gains (Source: Bloomberg)
Asian stocks rose as the yen weakened against all of its most-traded currencies and after gold prices rose to a record for a second day in New York on demand for the precious metal as a hedge against inflation.

Samsung First-Quarter Profit Falls on Lower TV, Panel Prices (Source: Bloomberg)
Samsung Electronics Co., the world’s largest maker of televisions and flat screens, reported first- quarter profit fell 34 percent after weakening consumer demand pushed down prices of TVs and liquid-crystal displays.

Euro at high ahead of rate hike, stocks buoyant
LONDON, April 5 (Reuters) - Differing prospects for interest rates sent the euro to a 14-month high against the dollar and extended the yen's steep decline on Wednesday as investors prepared for a new tightening cycle in the euro zone.World shares ticked higher, with emerging markets leading the way -- a reflection of renewed interest in the sector prompted in part by higher interest rate expectations in developed markets. "Optimism continues to rule even though there are still ... clear and present dangers. Portugal needs to find some financing fast," said Philippe Gijsels, analyst at BNP Paribas Fortis Global Markets.

20110407 1014 Global Commodities Related News.

Corn (Source: CME)
US corn futures finish lower in a setback from record highs Tuesday. Traders book profits and unwind intermarket spreads in which they had bought corn and sold soybeans, which ended slightly higher Wednesday. Market participants wait for the USDA to update supply/demand estimates in a monthly crop report Friday and widely expect forecasters to cut their outlook for season-end corn inventories. CBOT May corn slips 3 3/4c to $7.63/bushel.

Wheat (Source: CME)
US wheat futures close lower on profit-taking following a rally to one-month highs at CBOT. Markets feel additional pressure as traders unwind spreads in which they bought wheat and sold soybeans, which end slightly higher, analysts say. Traders still worry wet conditions will delay spring-wheat plantings in the northern Plains, with Freese-Notis Weather predicting it'll be "quite a while" before much fieldwork takes place. CBOT May wheat falls 4c to $7.82 1/4 a bushel; KCBT May sinks 10 1/2c to $9.39 1/2; MGE May loses 7 3/4c to $9.54 1/2.

Rice (Source: CME)
US rice futures weaken on spillover pressure from losses in the neighboring wheat and corn markets. Traders book profits in the grains following recent rallies, with rice pulling back after reaching its highest price in more than a week early Wednesday. Market feels ongoing pressure from ample global supplies, despite persistent chatter that Japan needs to increase rice imports due to damage from earthquake and tsunami, analysts note. CBOT May rice closes down 3c at $14.08 per hundredweight.

Crude Oil Declines as Much as 0.4% to $108.40 a Barrel in New York Trade (Source: Bloomberg)
Crude oil for May delivery fell as much as 43 cents, or 0.4 percent, to $108.40 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange today.

Oil Trades Near 30-Month High After NATO Escalates Air Strikes Over Libya (Source: Bloomberg)
Oil traded near a 30-month high in New York as NATO escalated its air campaign over Libya, and amid renewed concern that conflict in other energy-exporting countries may curtail supplies.

Russia Has 8M Tons More Grain Than Thought-Grain Union Executive (Source: CME)
Russia's grain supplies may be up to 8 million metric tons higher than previously thought, industry insiders said, raising hopes that the Kremlin may loosen its ban on exports before next year. Alexander Rabsky, department head at Russia Grain Union, said the influential lobby group has been pushing to allow farmers to ship their grain in order to free up badly-needed space in storage facilities and raise funds to finance the new crop. He estimated farmers may have hidden up to 3 million tons of grain from last year in the hope of higher prices. Combined with up to 5 million tons of grain still held in elevators in the south, he said Russia may have 7 million to 8 million tons more grain than government estimates. "We've been trying to convince the government to allow exports," he said. "It can be limited and controlled, but export is badly needed." "The farmers need money for the new planting and harvest campaign. Also they need somewhere to keep the newly harvested grain.
We'll have problems with this year's harvest because of this," he said. The Kremlin banned grain exports last summer after the worst drought to hit Russia in more than a century slashed the country's harvest by a third and sent domestic food inflation soaring. Although ministers have touted lifting the ban early, most dealers say it will be kept in place until September or October when the new harvest begins. But now improving prospects for the upcoming crop are pushing down prices and forcing farmers to ditch their grain to free up storage space. Last month Deputy Agriculture Minister Shamil Vakhitov raised the government estimate for the 2011 harvest to 90 million tons, up from 85 million tons. In the week to March 28, third-grade wheat in southern Russia declined to $198/ton from $215/ton, fourth-grade to $185/ton from $198/ton, and feed wheat to $178/ton from $188/ton, the Institute of Agricultural Market Studies said in a weekly note.
SovEcon agricultural analysts said feed wheat led the decline in European Russia, losing 275 rubles ($9.69) to reach RUB5,925/ton.

India Raises Subsidies On Key Fertilizer Imports (Source: CME)
India has raised subsidies on key imported fertilizers to keep down the cost of farm production as global prices of the vital agriculture inputs have soared, a senior fertilizer ministry official said. The government fixes benchmark rates at which companies can import key fertilizers and reimburses the companies the difference between their sale price to farmers and the benchmark import price. Indian companies have been finding it difficult to import fertilizers since the start of 2011, as global prices rose above the government-fixed benchmark rates due to a spike in the price of natural gas, a key feedstock to produce the farm nutrients. The government has raised the benchmark import price of urea--the most widely-used fertilizer in the country--to $350 a ton from $310.
The import price of di-ammonium phosphate, or DAP, crucial to plant growth and soil health, has been increased to $580 a ton from $450 and that of muriate of potash, or MoP, to $390 a ton from $350. India, the world's largest buyer of fertilizers, imports around one-fifth of the urea is consumes annually. It meets also most of its DAP and MoP requirements through purchases from overseas.

West Australian Drought Could Crimp 2011-12 Wheat Output - Rabobank (Source: CME)
Drought and parched soils in Western Australia--historically the source of up to 40% of national wheat output--could again crimp production this year, reducing the chance of a record Australian crop, Rabobank Australia said. With the winter crop planting window to open later this month in Western Australia, most of the cropping districts will need favorable and timely rainfall and below-average temperatures to fully replenish soil moisture levels, Rabobank analyst Tracey Allen said in a review of the seasonal outlook. "Current climate expectations aren't yet consistent with a bumper recovery year," she said. While Australian wheat production surged 20% in last crop year ended March 31 to 26.3 million metric tons, output in Western Australia slumped 42% to 4.7 million tons, or just 18% of national output, according to the government's chief commodities forecaster, the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences.
Abares forecast national wheat output this crop year at 24.3 million tons. It didn't estimate Western Australian production, though it would likely have been around or above a five-year annual average of 7.3 million tons. After annual national domestic consumption of around 6.0 million tons is met, the balance of output is available for export, usually making Australia a major supplier to the global trade. Western Australia can be a major global supplier in its own right. When the state's production reached a record 11.1 million tons of wheat in 2003-04, it was the source of about 10% of the year's global traded wheat. Allen said tight physical supplies of wheat, and indeed most traded farm commodities, means global markets remain on a knife edge, with any significant production disappointments likely to cause another step-up in prices from already high levels.
Southwest Western Australia experienced its driest year on record in 2010, and it has since missed out on the record rains that have fallen in many other places in Australia this year, including grain-growing areas in the eastern states. For much of the eastern states, soil moisture is at capacity, which raises the possibility that more rain in the next two months could delay plantings, particularly for other winter crops such as canola and pulses, she said. The risk that La Nina conditions in the Pacific Ocean could return in 2011-12, bringing more abnormally heavy rains to the region, also weighs on the east coast grain outlook, she said. The Bureau of Meteorology said Tuesday that the warming of subsurface temperatures in the Pacific Ocean indicates that the La Nina weather event is weakening and in its final stages, but that signals from atmospheric indicators were less certain.
Fertilizers are key to improving crop yields in the country, where more than 60% of the population depends on farming for a livelihood. Demand for grain sold under the government's program to provide supplies to regions hurt by the drought is also falling. In the latest intervention government tender on March 31, officials managed to sell only 6,480 tons of grain, down from 20,486 the day before. "The main reasons are reports about unaccounted grain stocks on the farms and the outlook: that a crop of a minimum of 85 million tons is possible this year," said a grain trader with operations in Russia.

Copper demand seen surviving China rate hikes
SANTIAGO, April 5 (Reuters) - China's interest rate hikes are fanning fears of a deeper slowdown in the world's top copper consumer, but demand remains strong and is picking up in the United States and Europe, industry executives say.
The Chinese central bank raised rates on Tuesday for the fourth time since October as it seeks to counter price pressures, initially depressing prices, but copper ended firmer as tight supply underpins the market.

JP Morgan bullish on China commodity demand, warns on social tension
SINGAPORE, April 5 (Reuters) - Social tension in China remains an investment risk as strong demand for coal, grains and copper pushes up commodity raw material prices, Jing Ulrich, J.P. Morgan China managing director, told a conference on Tuesday.
"Investors are always looking for the potential risks that have not been discounted," Ulrich said.

Corn hovers near record high, rally may stretch
SYDNEY, April 6 (Reuters) - U.S. corn futures steadied near record highs as worries that U.S. supplies could run out kept a floor under prices, raising hopes bulls can extend a four-day rally ahead of key U.S. data on Friday. Corn has gained more than 15 percent in the four days to Tuesday, since a U.S. government report showed unexpectedly low stocks as of March 1, prompting concerns of a further cut to U.S. Department of Agriculture's end-of-season inventory estimate due out on Friday. "It has come as a surprise to me the last couple of trading sessions. I didn't think corn had the legs to do it but it certainly has," said Jonathan Barratt, managing director at Commodity Broking Services.

Vietnam's Q2 rice exports to rise 8 pct vs. Q1-govt
HANOI, April 6 (Reuters) - Vietnam's rice exports in the second quarter of this year would rise 8 percent from the previous three months to 2 million tonnes, the government said on Wednesday. The volume in the quarter ending June will bring rice exports from Vietnam in the first half of 2011 to 3.85 million tonnes, or 64 percent of the country's annual export target, the government said in a statement, citing Vietnam Food Association data.

India's 2011 wheat harvest seen at 84.3 mln tonnes-farm minister
NEW DELHI, April 6 (Reuters) - India's wheat harvest is seen at 84.3 million tonnes in 2011,  Farm Minister Sharad Pawar said on Wednesday. The country's grains output is expected to be 235.8 million tonnes, he added. The government's previous forecast for wheat harvest this year was 81.47 million tonnes and for grains output, 232.07 million tonnes.

China's winter wheat rated above five-year average
BEIJING, April 6 (Reuters) - China's winter wheat crop has so far grown better than the same time a year ago or better than the average-level over the past five years despite dry weather earlier this year, a report by the Ministry of Agriculture showed.
Irrigation coupled with rains in late February eased the drought and 86 percent of winter wheat seedlings were rated as first and second-grade, or excellent to good condition, by the end of March. That was up by 3.1 percentage points from the year-earlier period or 2 percentage points higher than the average level in the past five years, the ministry said.

Exporters sell 101,600 T US corn to unknown-USDA
WASHINGTON, April 5 (Reuters) - Private exporters reported the sale of 101,600 tonnes of U.S. corn to unknown destinations for delivery next marketing year, said the Agriculture Department on Tuesday. The 2011/12 marketing year opens on Sept. 1. By law, exporters must report promptly the sale of 100,000 tonnes or more of a commodity to the same destination in one day but it sometimes can take a couple of days for the identity of a buyer to become known. Sales of smaller amounts are reported on a weekly basis.

Cocoa edges up as Ivory Coast deal nears
ICE cocoa futures edged up in early trade on Wednesday as the embattled political leader in top producer Ivory Coast negotiated the terms of his departure, which would allow exports to resume soon.  The only thing left to discuss with Ivory Coast's Laurent Gbagbo is his departure, French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe said on Wednesday, terming it as "absurd" for him to hang on.Raw sugar futures on ICE firmed in early trade, underpinned by delays in the cane harvest in the centre-south of Brazil.

Mexico sugar output seen at 5.3 mln tonnes
MEXICO CITY, April 5 (Reuters) - Mexican sugar production should reach 5.3 million tonnes in the 2010/11 harvest cycle, according to official forecasts from the national sugar committee seen by Reuters on Tuesday. The committee had previously seen output reaching 5.25 million tonnes, still above the 2009/10 growing year, when Mexico's output dropped to its lowest levels in a decade because of bad weather.

Uganda coffee exports up in March yr/yr-UCDA source
KAMPALA, April 5 (Reuters) - Uganda exported 223,099, 60-kg bags of coffee in March this year, up from 217,809 bags exported in the same month last year, a source at Uganda Coffee Development Authority (UCDA) said on Tuesday. The rise follows four straight months of export declines that were caused by drought and diseases in Africa's second largest grower.

India 2010/11 cotton arrivals up 2 pct to 27 mln bales
MUMBAI, April 5 (Reuters) - Domestic cotton arrivals in Indian spot markets till April 4 in the 2010/11 season edged up by 2 percent on year, the state-run Cotton Corp of India said on Tuesday. Arrivals as on April 4 stood at 27 million bales of 170 kg each, compared with 26.5 million bales a year ago, the government body said on its website.

India's farm min says may consider allowing further cotton exports
NEW DELHI, April 6 (Reuters) - A panel of minister is likely to consider allowing further exports of cotton, India's farm minister Sharad Paswar told reporters on Wednesday.India, the world's second biggest producer of cotton, has allowed 5.5 million bales for exports in the current year that began on Oct. 1.

US corn stocks to dip on demand for food-fuel
CHICAGO, April 5 (Reuters) - U.S. corn stocks will drop to a new 15-year low this summer, with the stock-to-use ratio the tighest since the 1930s amid strong demand for use in food and fuel even at record high prices, a Reuters Poll showed. Corn futures  at the Chicago Board of Trade hit a record high on Tuesday, rising to $7.70-3/4 per bushel to eclipse the $7.65 peak set during the 2008 global food crisis.

US Commodity sees agriculture as most popular investment
SINGAPORE, April 6 (Reuters) - United States Commodity Fund sees agriculture as the most popular commodity to invest in at the moment as red-hot demand and supply disruptions have boosted grains and other farm goods, while fears of an oil bubble should be ignored. "What seems to be clear right now, the greatest amount of buzz seems to be around agriculture," John Hyland, chief investment officer for the California-based firm, told Reuters on the sidelines of a commodities conference late Tuesday.

20110407 1012 Soy Oil & Palm Oil Related News.

 Soy Oil chart reading : little upside biased.

Soybeans (Source: CME)
US soybean futures end higher, managing to stabilize from prior losses, as traders booked profits on recent short positions. The market was oversold after three days of selling pressure, particularly for a market facing tight projected end-of-year supplies, said John Kleist of e-bot But he noted the advances were limited as slowing seasonal demand and a general sense of comfort in the market that South American production will relieve the strain on tight US stocks kept a lid on advances. CBOT May soy settled 3 1/4c higher at $13.76 1/2 a bushel.

Soybean Meal/Oil (Source: CME)
Soy-product futures ended mixed, with soymeal rebounding from recent declines with soybeans. It was helped by traders booking profits on short positions and long soyoil/short soymeal spreads, analysts said. The markets lacked fresh news to direct prices, with traders taking the opportunity to even some trades ahead of any possible risks in Friday's crop reports. CBOT May soymeal ended 0.6% higher at $355.60/short ton while May soyoil edge down 0.07c at 58.78c/pound.

Palm inches up on its growing discount to soyoil
Palm oil futures edged up on Wednesday as the discount of the tropical oil to competing soyoil widened, raising hopes of stronger demand although caution reined over the impact of China's rate hike."Earlier in China's interest rate hike cycle, there would have been a sell-down in commodities and vegetable oil markets," said a trader with a foreign brokerage in the Malaysian capital.