Friday, April 29, 2011

20110429 1819 FCPO EOD Daily Chart Study.

FCPO closed : 3270, changed : -23 points, volume : higher.
Bollinger band reading : side way range bound little downside biased.
MACD Histrogram : weakening, buyer closing position.
Support : 3250, 3200, 3150, 3100 level.
Resistance : 3270, 3300, 3350, 3420 level.
Comment :
FCPO closed recorded small loss with better volume participation ahead of next Tuesday export data while soy oil overnight closed substantially lower and currently rebounding little higher salvaging yesterday losses partially. News wise, Reuters reported that China buyers have cancelled 1 to 2 soy oil cargoes from Brazil due to sluggish domestic demand and soybean stock level remained high.
Daily chart formed a up bar candle positioned nearer to lower Bollinger band level after gap down, traded little lower and recovered upwards to closed near the high of the day. 
Technical reading remained suggesting a side way range bound little downside biased market development testing support and resistance level.
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.

20110429 1723 FKLI EOD Daily Chart Study.

FKLI closed : 1532 changed : +1 point, volume : lower.
Bollinger band reading : side way range bound.
MACD Histrogram : recovering, buyer testing market.
Support : 1530, 1515, 1500, 1485 level.
Resistance : 1540, 1550, 1565, 1580 level.
Comment :
Last trading of the month FKLI closed recorded small gain with lower volume changed hand with May 2011 contract doing less that 1 point discount compare to cash market that recorded small loss while regional markets traded mixed ahead of long weekend plus Monday holiday.
Daily chart formed a down doji bar candle closed little above middle Bollinger band level after market opened and traded higher before retreated lower tested support level and closed recovered slightly.
Reading wise, market still likely to trade side way range bound market development testing support and resistance level for the near term.
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.

20110429 1611 Global Commodities Related News.

China must cut palm oil import duties -Indonesia assoc
JAKARTA, April 28 (Reuters) - China, the world's No.2 vegetable oil buyer, must cut its import duties for palm oil to help boost Indonesian exports which are seen little changed at 2 million tonnes this year, an industry association said on Thursday.
China is the world's top palm oil importer, and analysts say consumption in the world's second-largest economy will rise about 10 percent this year to 7.3 million tonnes.

China cancelled Brazilian soyoil cargoes due to weak demand-CNGOIC
BEIJING, April 29 (Reuters) - Chinese buyers have cancelled one to two soy oil cargoes from Brazil due to sluggish domestic demand while stocks of imported soybeans remained plentiful, the China National Grain and Oils Information Center ( said on Friday.
"Many domestic importers are actively washing out cargoes as forward-month imports are posting losses," the center said in a report. One soy oil cargo carries about 30,000 tonnes of soy oil.

Ailing dollar boosts demand for commodities, credit
HONG KONG, April 29 (Reuters) - The dollar floundered at three-year lows against a basket of currencies on Friday, keeping precious metals near record highs, although the risk of dealers covering bets against the beleaguered U.S. currency in thin trading looms, especially given holidays in some centres including Japan.
"The likely indicator of a reversal in the USD's (mis)fortunes is global equities. A sustained bout of profit-taking would assuredly spillover into foreign exchange markets, with the EUR and AUD returning back to earth," said Michael Woolfolk, strategist at BNY Bellon.

US wheat slides to 2-wk low, corn ticks up after selloff
SINGAPORE, April 29 (Reuters) - U.S. wheat futures lost more ground on Friday, dropping around half a percent to a two-week low as outlook of improved weather in parched U.S. winter crop area prompted funds to liquidate positions.
"Funds were heavy sellers and there has been talk about Russian planning to suspend export ban," said Garry Booth, a trader with MF Global Australia. "Updated weather forecasts are beneficial for crops in some areas."  

CBOT corn owners to keep tight rein on stocks
CHICAGO, April 28 (Reuters) - Owners of cash corn are likely to retain possession, banking on higher prices as stocks shrink to the lowest since the 1930s and as U.S. farmers remain mired in mud instead of planting the new crop.
Firm cash markets and logistical snarls also will keep soybean deliveries to a minimum and a lucrative storage plan for owners of wheat also will keep wheat under strong wraps.

Sugar versus corn syrup in false advertising lawsuit
SAN FRANCISCO, April 28 (Reuters) - Sugar producers think recent marketing efforts by manufacturers of high-fructose corn syrup aren't so sweet.
In a lawsuit filed last week, three sugar distributors say that equating HFCS with real sugar -- with slogans like "your body can't tell the difference" -- misleads consumers.

Grain exporters raided again in Argentina tax probe
BUENOS AIRES, April 28 (Reuters) - Argentine tax inspectors raided the premises of some of the country's largest multinational grains exporters on Thursday as part an investigation into alleged evasion, the AFIP tax agency said.
The local offices of agribusiness giants Bunge Ltd  and Cargill were among those raided, a source close to the probe said on condition of anonymity.

Ivorian cocoa prices rise as sector slowly revives
ABIDJAN, April 28 (Reuters) - Ivorian cocoa farmers said on Thursday that prices for their beans were rising for the first time since the end of a violent post-election power struggle, but that smuggling continued into Ghana.
Banks began reopening on Thursday and cocoa exporters in the top grower nation said they expected shipments of beans to resume by the end of next week, key steps in reviving cocoa trade in the countryside.

More rain needed to preserve EU rapeseed yields
PARIS, April 28 (Reuters) - Regular rainfall will be needed in top European rapeseed producers Germany and France in the coming weeks to limit the impact on yields from dry, hot weather that has stressed crops during April, analysts and traders said.
Showers have returned to parts of the two producers this week but forecasts have yet to show substantial rain in major growing regions.

China demand for Indonesia rubber seen up 33pct-assoc
JAKARTA, April 28 (Reuters) - Indonesia will export a third more rubber this year to China, which will become the top buyer from the world's second-largest producer, as demand from Chinese tyre makers rises, taking the place of the drop in Japan after the earthquake, the Indonesian Rubber Association said on Thursday.
China will replace the United States in 2011 as Indonesia's biggest rubber export market, with up to 800,000 tonnes heading to the world's second-largest economy, Asril Sutan Amir, chairman at the association, known as Gapkindo, told Reuters.

Crude falls on fears slower U.S. growth may cut demand
SINGAPORE, April 29 (Reuters) - Crude fell on Friday, after settling at a 31-month high in the previous session, on concerns that slowing growth in top consumer United States may pare demand, but a weaker dollar and unrest in the Middle East helped stem a slide in prices.
"The two pieces of news have counterbalanced each other, helping keep oil steady," said Victor Shum, an analyst at Purvin & Gertz. "Oil had risen somewhat, and some pullback from that point was not unexpected."

Libya rebel oil cargo heads for China, buyer remains a mystery
SINGAPORE/BEIJING, April 29 (Reuters) - A tanker with the first major oil shipment from rebel-held east Libya is expected to arrive in China next week, traders said on Friday, but it remain unclear who the buyer of the cargo is.
The Liberia-registered tanker Equator, reported to be carrying 80,000 tonnes of crude, left the rebel-held east Libyan port of Marsa el Hariga three weeks ago, carrying fuel exports vital to financing the uprising against Muammar Gaddafi.

Tornadoes, storms batter Alabama coal mine
NEW YORK, April 28 (Reuters) - Mine owner Cliffs Natural Resources  said on Thursday violent storms and tornadoes that tore through Alabama, hit a coal mine there and severely damaged some above-ground operations,
All employees were accounted for with no known injuries, but Cliffs said the severe weather did significant damage to the Oak Grove mine's preparation plant and overland conveyor system on Wednesday evening.

Russia hikes export duties to fight gasoline crunch
MOSCOW, April 28 (Reuters) - Russia's government will hike export duties on gasoline as the world's largest oil producer fights fuel shortages on the domestic market, government sources said on Thursday.
The duties will go up by 44 percent from May 1 after Prime Minister Vladimir Putin earlier in the day ordered officials to raise them "so that export economics and the sale of product on the domestic market correspond with one another."

Coal miner Consol's profit beats Street
NEW YORK, April 28 (Reuters) - Coal and natural gas producer Consol Energy Inc  beat Wall Street estimates with a big jump in quarterly profit on Thursday, sending its stock up more than 3 percent.
The company also raised coal production goals for 2012 and 2013 and said it will reopen an idled Virginia mine and expand its Baltimore port to handle growing demand for exports.

Brazil to hold oil bid round in September
BRASILIA, April 28 (Reuters) - Brazil will hold its 11th oil and gas exploration bidding round in September, including 174 offshore and onshore blocks, Energy Minister Edison Lobao said on Thursday.
The auction will not include areas in the coveted deepwater region known as the subsalt, which includes discoveries such as the Lula and Cernambi fields and is believed to hold billions of barrels of oil.

ShFE copper falls after weak US data; LME shut
SINGAPORE, April 29 (Reuters) - Shanghai copper fell on Friday, after the U.S. unveiled lower-than-estimated GDP figures for the first quarter and a surprise jump in the number of unemployment benefits claims.
"I think the market is becoming more pessimistic as we begin to think about what will happen after various countries withdraw their stimulus packages. We will see copper try to find a new support price to accommodate those worries," Jinhui Futures deputy general manager Lin Yuhui said.

China steel capacity to hit 768 mln T by end-2010 - CISA
BEIJING, April 29 (Reuters) - China's total steel capacity will hit 768 million tonnes by the end of this year, and controlling excess capacity will be one of the big tasks facing the sector, the China Iron & Steel Association (CISA) said on Friday.
China's steel demand was expected to rise 2.6 to 4.6 percent per year from 2011 to 2015, CISA officials told a news conference in Beijing.

US panel oks steep duties on Chinese aluminum goods
WASHINGTON, April 28 (Reuters) - A U.S. trade panel gave final approval on Thursday to duties ranging up to more than 400 percent on around $500 million of aluminum products from China used in the car and construction industry.
The move is the latest sign of trade friction between the world's two largest economies, but has been in the works for over a year.

Silver, gold near lifetime highs, dollar loses ground
SINGAPORE, April 29 (Reuters) - Silver and gold were within sight of historic highs on Friday and could resume an uptrend as the U.S. dollar held near three-year lows against a basket of currencies on hopes U.S. monetary policy would stay ultra loose, keeping inflationary price pressures high.
"If the dollar continues to weaken, then it's only likely to boost gold as well as silver as the inverse relationship between the two assets persists. I would say that for gold I am still looking for it to hit $1,600 this year," said Ong Yi Ling, investment analyst at Phillip Futures in Singapore.   

20110429 1101 Global Market & Commodities Related News.

GLOBAL MARKETS: Dollar at 3-year low on Fed outlook, silver glitters
HONG KONG, April 29 (Reuters) - The dollar floundered at three-year lows against a basket of currencies on Friday as players ratcheted up bets on the Fed's ultra-easy monetary stance, sending commodities like silver to a record high and keeping stocks well supported. 
"The likely indicator of a reversal in the USD's (mis)fortunes is global equities. A sustained bout of profit-taking would assuredly spillover into foreign exchange markets, with the EUR and AUD returning back to earth," said Michael Woolfolk, strategist at BNY Bellon.

OIL: US crude hits 31-month high as dollar weakens
NEW YORK, April 28 (Reuters) - U.S. crude oil futures rose on Thursday to hit a 31-month high settlement after a volatile trading session that saw a weak dollar attract investors seeking alternative assets.
"The Fed did not give commodities traders any reason to think that the dollar's fall will be stemmed, creating incentive to keep buying commodities," said Stephen Schork, president at the Schork Group in Villanova, Pennsylvania.

NATURAL GAS: Natural gas ends up near 4 pct, prices spike on EIA
NEW YORK, April 28 (Reuters) - U.S. natural gas futures ended up sharply on Thursday and the new front-month contract spiked to a three-month high after a government report showed a weekly inventory build well below market expectations.
"The (EIA build) number was a little low, so they ran it up, but a lot of the (recent) buying is the nuclear situation. There's a high percentage of units down, and it's boosting demand," a Chicago-based trader said.

EURO COAL: Natural gas ends up near 4 pct, prices spike on EIA
NEW YORK, April 28 (Reuters) - U.S. natural gas futures ended up sharply on Thursday and the new front-month contract spiked to a three-month high after a government report showed a weekly inventory build well below market expectations.
"The (EIA build) number was a little low, so they ran it up, but a lot of the (recent) buying is the nuclear situation. There's a high percentage of units down, and it's boosting demand," a Chicago-based trader said.

COMMODITIES: Gold, silver set new highs as Fed sparks buying
NEW YORK, April 28 (Reuters) - Gold set its ninth all-time high in 10 days on Thursday, silver logged its first record in 31 years and aluminium neared a three-year peak as investors poured cash into commodities a day after the U.S. Federal Reserve signaled it would extend its loose monetary policy.
"The biggest factor (in the GDP data) was weather. It hurt consumption and construction. Energy also hurt consumption as well. Higher gasoline prices took a bigger bite out of people's budget," said Stephen Stanley, chief economist at Pierpont Securities in Stamford, Connecticut.

US crude oil imports down in February-EIA
WASHINGTON, April 28 (Reuters) - U.S. crude oil imports in fell in February, after increasing for three consecutive months, the Energy Information Administration said on Thursday.
Crude imports averaged 8.013 million barrels per day in February, down 1.056 million bpd from January. Crude imports were down 667,000 bpd from the previous year.

Exxon, Shell profits surge on higher oil prices
LONDON/NEW YORK, April 28 (Reuters) - Exxon Mobil Corp  and Royal Dutch Shell Plc  reported significantly bigger first-quarter profits and beat analysts' forecasts, helped by high oil prices and strong refining margins.
Profits for the world's biggest oil producers have surged as oil prices moved above $100 per barrel in the first quarter on unrest in the Middle East and Africa and growing global demand for energy.

20110429 1007 Global Economic Related News.

Thailand: Industrial output declined by the most in 19 months in March following the earthquake and tsunami in Japan, the Southeast Asian nations second-largest export market. The industrial production index fell 6.67% YoY compared with a revised contraction of 2.97% YoY in February. (Source: Bloomberg)    

Thailand: Price risks exceed growth threat as output slumps
Thailand’s borrowing costs are inappropriate as inflation risks exceed threats to growth, the central bank said as the government predicted industrial output will revive from the worst slide since 2009 after Japan’s quake. The economy will expand 4.1% in 2011, driving consumer inflation to 3.9% for the year, the Bank of Thailand said in Bangkok yesterday. Manufacturing output fell 6.67% in March, the most in 19 months, a report from the Office of Industrial Economics showed earlier. The central bank has said the 11 March disaster in Japan, Thailand’s second-biggest export market, will hurt shipments only in the short term and has signaled further increases in interest rates and the baht to damp price gains. (Financial Daily)

Japan: BOJ bets on Japan power restoration in rejecting more stimulus
The Bank of Japan raised its growth forecast for next year on optimism the economy will bounce back on reconstruction work and restored power supplies after factory output dropped by a record in March. The world’s third-largest economy will expand 2.9% in the year starting April 2012, the central bank said yesterday. It more than halved its prediction for this fiscal year to 0.6% after the 11 March earthquake. Governor Masaaki Shirakawa and his board yesterday rejected a call by one of his deputies for additional asset purchases to spur growth as they assess the effects of the central bank’s existing stimulus. (Bloomberg)

S. Korea: Current-account surplus widened to a three-month high in March as record exports offset a rise in dividend payments to foreign shareholders. The surplus was USD1.43b, compared with a revised USD1.13b, the Bank of Korea said in a statement in Seoul. (Source: Bloomberg)

German: Unemployment falls below 3m to 19-year low
German unemployment fell below 3m for the first time in almost 19 years in April in adjusted terms, increasing the likelihood that household spending will boost economic growth. The number of people out of work dropped a seasonally adjusted 37,000 to 2.97m; the Nuremberg-based Federal Labor Agency said yesterday, the lowest level since June 1992. The jobless rate was unchanged at 7.1%. (Bloomberg)

UK: Consumer confidence falls to lowest since 2009 recession
UK consumer confidence slumped to its weakest level since the depth of the recession in February 2009 as the government’s budget cuts began in earnest, a report by GfK NOP Ltd. showed. The index of sentiment fell to minus 31 in April from minus 28 in March, the London-based research group said in a statement yesterday. The reading is down from minus 16 a year earlier and each of the five measures that make up the gauge declined on the month. (Bloomberg)

US: Economy growth cooled in first quarter to 1.8%
The US economy slowed more than forecast in the first quarter as government spending declined by the most since 1983 and household purchases cooled. Gross domestic product rose at a 1.8% annual rate from January through March after a 3.1% pace in the final three months of 2010, the Commerce Department said yesterday in Washington. (Bloomberg)

US: Pending Sales of existing homes rose 5.1% in March
The number of Americans signing contracts to buy previously owned homes rose more than forecast in March, a sign the industry that triggered the recession may begin to stabilize. The index of pending home resales climbed 5.1% after a revised 0.7% increase the prior month, the National Association of Realtors said yesterday in Washington. An improving job market, falling home prices and low borrowing costs may help to attract more buyers in coming months. At the same time, foreclosures are worsening the glut of unsold properties, one reason a sustained housing recovery is yet to develop almost two years after the end of the recession. (Bloomberg)

U.S: Initial jobless claims increase to three-month high. Jobless claims increased by 25,000 to 429,000 in the week ended April 23, the most since late January. The government anticipates a drop in unadjusted applications during the Good Friday holiday week, something that didnt happen this year, a Labor Department spokesman said. (Source: Bloomberg)

20110429 1005 Malaysia Corporate Related News.

KLCI chart reading : side way range bound little downside biased.

Primus suit dismissed
The suit by Primus Pacific Partners Ltd's Malaysian unit against certain shareholders and directors of EON Capital Bhd (EON Cap) over the proposed sale of the latter to Hong Leong Bank (HLB) has been dismissed with costs. In his 100-page decision which took about one-and-a-half hours to deliver, Judicial Commissioner Varghese George Varughese held that petitioner Primus (M) SB had failed to prove the so-called complaints that formed the foundation of the petition against nine board members of EON Cap and three entities controlled by Rin Kei Mei and Tan Sri Tiong Hiew King, who are the shareholders in the banking group. He also ruled that the petitioner was not entitled to any relief sought. (StarBiz) 

Joint agreement on RM5bn aluminium smelting plant
Gulf International Investment Group Holdings SB, headed by local tycoon Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar Al-Bukhary and UAE-based business leader Mohamed Ali Rashed Alabbar, has entered into a JV agreement with Aluminium Corp of China to develop a USD1.6bn (RM5bn) aluminium smelting plant in Sarawak. The JV company, Smelter Asia SB, will develop, own and operate the private aluminium smelting plant with an annual capacity of 370,000 tonnes. The smelter will be located in Samalaju Industrial Park, 60km from Bintulu and some 180km from the Bakun hydroelectric dam. The park has been earmarked by the state government for heavy industries under the Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy master plan. (StarBiz) 

HELP on the way to seeing up to 20% increase in revenue
HELP International is upbeat on achieving a yearly increase in revenue of 15%-20% based on its current performance, eventually doubling its revenue in six years. HELP, which owns and operates HELP University College, reported a revenue of RM105.2m for its financial year ended 31 Oct 2010, up 8.9% from RM96.6m previously. “We have consistently been achieving similar figures for many years, so we will be able to achieve that figure in the years to come. In six years, the revenue will double because the percentage is compounded,” said HELP president and co-founder Datuk Dr Paul Chan. (Malaysian Reserve)

Sime Darby Motors targets to sell 60,000 cars in 2011
Sime Darby Motors may venture into new markets including Indochina as it seeks new opportunities. Executive vice president Datuk Lawrence Lee said on 28 Apr, the company sold 35,000 cars in 1H2011 and for the full year, targets to sell 60,000 units, up from 57,000 in 2010. He said there could be supply issues in 2H2011 following the aftermath from the recent tsunami in Japan, although the company is managing the issue as to not fall short of the market demand. (Financial Daily)

Sime Darby: Auto divisions revenue may surpass plantations. The automotive division expects to sell more than 60,000 cars in the FY11 (YE Jun), from 57,000 a year ago. 1HFY11 saw it selling 35,000 cars across eight countries. Sime Darby's motor division registered revenue of RM6.7b compared to RM5.7b by the plantation business. (Source: Business Times)

SEGi 1Q net profit surges 90.5% to RM18.12m
SEG INTERNATIONAL net profit for the first quarter ended 31 Mar 2011 surged 90.5% to RM18.12m from RM9.51m a year earlier due to the increase in student enrolments at its institutions. Revenue for the quarter rose to RM68.47m from RM52.29m in 2010. EPS was 7.35 sen, while net assets per share was 77.2 sen. SEGi said on Thursday, 28 Apr that it recorded marked improvement in student numbers and profitability in the previous year and the current quarter. “This trend is expected to continue in 2011 and the foreseeable future as the group has put in place a firm foundation and strategy for sustainable growth. “Quality niche academic programmes will be introduced continually by the group backed by a strong management and academic team,” it said. (Financial Daily)

Eversendai IPO to fund growth in India
Local steel and power plant installation contractor Eversendai Corp SB plans to utilise EM83m of the proceeds raised in its upcoming IPO for its operations in India. In a preliminary prospectus posted yesterday on the Securities Commission’s website, the company noted that RM50m would go towards the acquisition establishment of a fabrication facility in India with a fabrication capacity of 36,000 MT per annum. The company intends to invest another RM33m to increase the capacity of its Indian plant to 50,000 MT per annum. The facility will be located in Tamil Nadu or Andhra Pradesh in India, and will be established two years from its IPO. (Financial Daily)  

MAHB: Ups target to 72m passengers for 2014. Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB) is revising its passenger traffic volume target to 72m for 2014, from 60m earlier under its five-year plan. MAHB is also targeting to achieve EBITDA and ROE of RM1b and 10% respectively under its five-year plan that expires in 2014. (Source: TheEdgeDaily)

RHB: 6 suitors. It is expected that the number of suitor for RHBCap will be reduced from 15 banks and private equity firms to 6. (Source: TheEdgeDaily)

Bintulu Port: Eying tariff revision. Bintulu Port Holdings Bhd (BPHB) expects a RM20-30m increase in annual group revenue if the non-LNG tariff is approved. (TheStar)

DiGi: Appoints ZTE for LTE network. DiGi Telecommunications announced the appointment of a Chinese firm, ZTE Corporation to build a unified mobile network. Listed in Shenzhen and Hong Kong, ZTE is a global provider of telecommunications equipment and network solutions. The planned network will provide DiGi with a fully transformed 2G, 3G and 4G network from 3Q2011. (Source: TheEdgeDaily)

CIMB: Completes RM250m bond issue. CIMB announced that it had completed the issuance of RM250m Tier 2 junior Sukuk and a RM500m MTN to refinance existing credit facilities (Source: The Malaysian Reserve)

UOA: Plans RM1.2b IPO. UOA Development Bhd plans to raise about RM1.2b in an IPO exercise. A unit of Sydney and Singapore listed United Overseas Australia Ltd, the Company will offer as many as 407m shares at an indicative price of RM3 each. The company may start marketing share in mid-May ahead of a June listing. (Source: The Malaysian Reserve)

20110429 0949 Global Market Related News.

DJIA chart reading : upside biased with possible pullback correction.

Hang Seng chart reading : side way range bound.

Fed's Bernanke signals no rush to reverse stimulus
WASHINGTON, April 27 (Reuters) - Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke signaled on Wednesday that the U.S. central bank is in no rush to scale back its support for the economy with the labor market still in a "very, very deep hole."
The Fed trimmed its forecast for 2011 economic growth in a nod to a weak start to the year and bumped up its projections for inflation, which caused some jitters in financial markets.

Geithner Says ‘Unfair and Broken’ Tax System Is Cause of U.S. Deficit Woes (Source: Bloomberg)
Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner said the U.S. needs to overhaul its tax code in order to rein in the national debt and preserve economic growth. “Americans have to understand that deficits matter, that deficits are not just the result of spending choices, but also of an unfair and broken tax system,” Geithner said in a speech in Detroit today.

Pending Sales of Existing Homes in U.S. Increase 5.1%, More Than Estimated (Source: Bloomberg)
The number of Americans signing contracts to buy previously owned homes rose more than forecast in March, a sign the industry that triggered the recession may begin to stabilize. The index of pending home resales climbed 5.1 percent after a revised 0.7 percent increase the prior month, the National Association of Realtors said today in Washington. The median forecast in a Bloomberg News survey called for a 1.5 percent rise.

Bernanke Begins Public Dialogue With Pledge to Maintain Record Stimulus (Source: Bloomberg)
Ben S. Bernanke, at the first press conference by a Federal Reserve Chairman following a policy meeting, said the economy still requires monetary support while the need to contain inflation means further easing is unlikely. The 57-year-old former Princeton University professor stepped before the television cameras in a top-floor conference room in the Fed’s Washington headquarters yesterday and began a dialogue with the American public about the central bank’s goals and strategies. He explained the tension between reducing an 8.8 percent unemployment rate and keeping a lid on inflation. 

Initial Jobless Claims in U.S. Increase to Three-Month High (Source: Bloomberg)
New applications for unemployment benefits in the U.S. unexpectedly rose last week to the highest level in three months, a sign progress in the labor market may be stalling. Jobless claims increased by 25,000 to 429,000 in the week ended April 23, the most since late January, Labor Department figures showed today in Washington. The government anticipates a drop in unadjusted applications during the Good Friday holiday week, something that didn’t happen this year, a Labor Department spokesman said.

U.S. Economy’s Growth Cooled in First Quarter to 1.8% Rate (Source: Bloomberg)
The U.S. economy slowed more than forecast in the first quarter as government spending declined by the most since 1983 and household purchases cooled.

Tornadoes Ravage U.S. South, Killing Hundreds in Six States (Source: Bloomberg)
The worst day of tornadoes in 37 years tore through the U.S. Southeast, killing hundreds of people, causing millions in damage and cutting power to a nuclear plant. At least 280 people died in six states, with Alabama hardest-hit, as high winds tore apart homes and businesses, the Associated Press reported. As many as a million people were without power, Alabama’s governor said. Earlier this week the same weather system killed 11 people in Arkansas.

Exxon Profit Surges as Consumers and Lawmakers Fume Over Gasoline Prices (Source: Bloomberg)
Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM), the world’s largest company by market value, posted its largest profit in almost three years as soaring gasoline prices fueled discontent among consumers and policymakers. With U.S. motorists paying the most for gasoline since prices reached a record $4.11 a gallon in the summer of 2008, Exxon said today that its first-quarter net income jumped 69 percent to $10.7 billion. The Irving, Texas-based company is sitting on a cash pile of $13.2 billion, even after distributing more than $7 billion to shareholders in buybacks and dividends.

GE sees best profit outlook in a decade, execs say
SALT LAKE CITY, April 27 (Reuters) - General Electric Co  sees its best earnings growth prospects in a decade as the global economic recovery drives demand for the heavy energy and aviation equipment it makes, top executives said.
Rising oil prices have not yet taken a toll on global growth rates, Chief Executive Jeff Immelt said at the company's shareholder meeting on Wednesday.

World Bank raises China 2011 GDP forecast, urges more tightening
BEIJING, April 28 (Reuters) - The World Bank on Thursday raised its forecast of China's economic growth in 2011 for the second time in as many months and said it was too early for Beijing to halt policy tightening, not least because of inflationary risks.
In its latest quarterly update of the world's second-largest economy, the bank slashed its projection of China's 2011 current account surplus to 3.6 percent of gross domestic product -- comfortably below the 4 percent ceiling mooted by U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner for G20 countries.

ICBC Leads Chinese Banks in Curbing Bad Loans as Net Surges (Source: Bloomberg)
Industrial & Commercial Bank of China (1398) Ltd. led the nation’s biggest banks in curbing defaults in the first quarter, helping alleviate concern that their asset quality may deteriorate following a two-year credit boom. Bad loans at Beijing-based ICBC, the world’s most profitable bank, dropped almost 4 percent from the end of 2010 as earnings for the three-month period climbed 29 percent from a year earlier, according to an exchange filing yesterday. China Construction Bank Ltd., the world’s second-largest lender by market value, said bad loans fell by 157 million yuan to 64.6 billion yuan as net income increased 34 percent. Bank of China Ltd. (3988), the nation’s third-largest by assets, said such debt fell 1.8 percent as profit climbed 28 percent. The results show concerns that credit to local governments and developers would lead to a surge in arrears may be overblown.
Chinese banks this month were ordered to conduct new stress tests on real estate loans, demand faster repayment on government borrowings and increase deposits set aside as reserves to the highest level in at least two decades.

BOJ reckons Japan in recession, stands pat on policy
TOKYO, April 28 (Reuters) - The Bank of Japan kept monetary policy unchanged on Thursday even as it lowered growth forecasts and estimated the economy tipped into recession early this year, disappointing analysts who felt the grim readings after last month's earthquake called for more policy easing.
Japan's recovery from the quake would accelerate from October, the BOJ said in its twice-yearly outlook report on the economy. At the same time, it revised up economic forecasts for the year ending in March 2013 and raised its estimate for core consumer price inflation in the current fiscal year.

BOJ Bets on Japan Power Restoration in Rejecting More Stimulus (Source: Bloomberg)
The Bank of Japan raised its growth forecast for next year on optimism the economy will bounce back on reconstruction work and restored power supplies after factory output dropped by a record in March.

South Korea’s Slower Output Growth May Fail to Deter Rate Increase in May (Source: Bloomberg)
South Korea’s industrial production expanded at the slowest pace in six months in March, a moderation that may fail to deter the central bank from raising interest rates next month.

Pound Passes $1.67 for First Time Since 2009 on Outlook for BOE Tightening (Source: Bloomberg)
The pound advanced against the dollar as investors bet the Bank of England will raise rates ahead of its U.S. counterpart after the Federal Reserve renewed its pledge to keep rates near zero to stimulate the economy. Sterling declined for a fifth day versus the euro as data showed U.K. consumer confidence fell to the weakest level in two years. Ben S. Bernanke, speaking yesterday at the first press conference by a Fed chairman following a policy meeting, said the U.S. still requires monetary support. Gross domestic product data today showed the U.S. economy grew at a slower pace than forecast in the first quarter.

German Unemployment Declines to 19-Year Low as Export Boom Drives Demand (Source: Bloomberg)
German unemployment fell below 3 million for the first time in almost 19 years in April in adjusted terms, increasing the likelihood that household spending will boost economic growth.

Libyan Rebels Fight to Keep Control of Key Border Crossing (Source: Bloomberg)
Pro- and anti-Qaddafi forces fought for control of a key western Libyan border crossing into Tunisia, near an area where a regime offensive against the Berber minority has gone on with little foreign attention. Competing claims of success at the Wazin border crossing highlighted the fighting yesterday in Libya’s western mountains and nearby areas, where U.S. officials say government forces have been attacking Berbers, also called Amazigh, an indigenous ethnic group that joined the rebellion after long suffering discrimination under Muammar Qaddafi’s rule.

FOREX-Dollar stays weak after Fed, euro may test $1.50
LONDON, April 28 (Reuters) - The dollar plumbed a three-year low against a currency basket on Thursday, while the euro was set to attack a key psychological level of $1.50, as the view that U.S. interest rates would stay low spurred more dollar selling.
The dollar dropped across the board, with the Australian dollar charging through previous highs to a 29-year peak above $1.0900 and looking poised to break $1.10 while both the euro and sterling vaulted to 17-month highs.  

Dollar keeps falling after Fed, stocks buoyant (Source: Reuters)
The dollar slid to three-year lows, helping U.S. crude oil up to a 2-1/2 year high, and stocks rose worldwide as investors bet ultra-loose U.S. policy will continue to drive money into riskier assets. "With the prospect of ultra easy monetary policy continuing for the foreseeable future in the world's largest economy, traders are feeling more confident about holding the bullish view and risk appetite is expected to be high," said Jonathan Sudaria, a night dealer at Capital Spreads in London. 

20110429 0945 Global Commodities Related News.

Corn (Source: CME)
US corn futures finish limit down on forecasts for improved weather and heavy selling by commodity funds. Prices tumbled as forecasters predicted warmer, drier weather would allow farmers to plant corn after delays due to cool, wet conditions. Yet, analysts note conditions won't be perfect as it will take awhile for fields to dry and soils to warm up. Funds helped fuel the decline by selling an estimated 22,000 contracts, a large amount, traders say. CBOT July corn falls the daily 30c limit to a 4-week low of $7.29 1/4 a bushel. The limit Friday will be 45c.

Wheat (Source: CME)
US wheat futures close sharply lower, like corn, as talk of rain in the drought-hit southern Plains eases concerns about crop losses. The government's weekly drought monitor reports rains eased drought conditions across portions of central and eastern Oklahoma, although farmers warn the moisture is coming too late to reverse crop losses. "It might be too late, but the perception is that they're getting more precipitation down there," says Chad Henderson of Prime Agricultural Consultants.

Oats (Source: CME)
US oat futures tumbled to expanded exchange-imposed daily trading limits of 30 cents a bushel. Traders reducing risk exposure on a broader scale in grain futures, dropped prices to their lowest levels in a month. Exchange limits on oats will expand to 45 cents Friday. Oats for July delivery settled 30 cents or 7.9% lower at $3.50 a bushel.

Rice (Source: CME)
US rice futures fall under spillover pressure from sharp declines in the corn and wheat markets. Wheat tumbled more than 4%, dragging down rice because both grains are global food staples, a market analyst notes. Meanwhile, corn fell its daily exchange limit. Rice felt additional pressure from poor export demand, the analyst says. Weekly sales of 38,700 tons were down 41% from the previous week and 35% from the prior four-week average. CBOT July rice ends down 7 1/2c at $14.43/hundredweight.

Inflation, Higher Costs Squeeze Farmers As Food Prices Rise (Source: CME)
High inflation and falling numbers of workers meant U.K. farm incomes declined in real terms in 2010 despite the industry posting its best performance in 15 years, the U.K.'s farm ministry said. Total income from farming rose by 0.1% to GBP4.38 billion last year as a surge in food prices pushed up the value of agricultural products 5.3% to GBP20.7 billion, the survey by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs found. "The three years from 2008 to 2010 represents the best performance for the agricultural industry since 1996," said the report. But after adjusting for inflation, total income from farming is estimated to have fallen by GBP198.4 million, or 4.3%, including a 3.4% decline in total income per annual work unit--a measurement of returns for individuals working in the agricultural sector. "All the headlines are about booming prices and food inflation but the return for U.K. farmers is certainly not booming," said Phil Bicknell, chief economist at the National Farmers' Union.
"We're please to see in terms of gross value added that agriculture's contribution to the economy has continued to grow through 2010 but we can't shy away from the fact that the sector is under pressure." He said that while an 8.5% rise in the value of crops to GBP7.6 billion and a 3.8% boost in the value of livestock output to GBP11.2 billion showed better returns overall, individual sectors and farms were still suffering. And with the reduction in payments under the European Union support scheme continuing, a 4.8% rise in the cost of inputs like fertilizers, energy and feed meant that farmers will need to see high prices in the future to continue to improve output, he said. "We need to maintain a level of production and a continuation of strong prices for agricultural products if U.K. farmers are to survive," he said.

Obama Admin Wants To Curb Unhealthy Food Marketing To Kids (Source: CME)
Food companies should be marketing healthier foods to impressionable children, according to several U.S. government agencies that released a proposal asking industry to change its ways. Food companies are being asked to voluntarily replace advertising campaigns trying to sell candy, soda and chips to kids with foods that "make a meaningful contribution to the diet," according to the Federal Trade Commission, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Children need to eat less sodium, saturated fat, trans fat, and sugar, the government agencies said. "The proposed voluntary principles are designed to encourage stronger and more meaningful self-regulation by the food industry and to support parents' efforts to get their kids to eat healthier foods. While the goals they would set for food marketers are ambitious and would take time to put into place, the public health stakes could not be higher," the agencies said in a joint release.
"One in three children is overweight or obese, and the rates are even higher among some racial and ethnic groups."

Corn rises on Bernanke comments, wheat extends losses
U.S. corn futures rose 0.7 percent, while soybeans firmed as the dollar tumbled after U.S. Federal Reserve Chief Ben Bernanke gave no sign the central bank was about to tighten monetary policy. "We are getting planting delays and the balance sheet even for the next season looks pretty tight," said Abah Ofon, an analyst with Standard Chartered Bank in Singapore.

Ukraine lifts grain crop figure, sees export jump
KIEV, April 28 (Reuters) - Ukraine's Agriculture Ministry has raised its 2011 grain harvest forecast to "up to 45 million tonnes" from 42-43 million and expects a jump in exports, a senior ministry official said on Thursday.
"We see (2011/12) exports at 19-20 million tonnes including 8-9 million tonnes of wheat, 4 million tonnes of maize and 5-6 million tonnes of barley," Anatoly Rozgon, the head of the ministry's planting department, told reporters.

U.S. grain exports face hurdle if floods worsen
CHICAGO, April 27 (Reuters) - High water on the Mississippi River has slashed grain shipments by about 40 percent and could pose a threat to exports from the U.S. Gulf, the main exit for agricultural products to world markets, industry sources said Wednesday.
Grain exporters have for the moment been able to continue loading vessels at Gulf terminals, drawing from supplies they have on hand and from river elevators not yet hit by flooding, which in some areas of the Midwest was the worst in more than 70 years.

No beneficial rain seen in key French grain areas
PARIS, April 27 (Reuters) - The key grain-growing regions in northern France will receive virtually no rainfall that could relieve drought-hit grain plants, weather forecaster Meteo France said on Wednesday.
"For the northern regions there will be no beneficial rain in the coming seven days," Meteo France forecaster Dominique Raspaud told Reuters.

Rains save Algeria grain harvest-minister
MEKNES, Morocco, April 27 (Reuters) - Rainfall in the past few days has saved Algeria's grain harvest after drought threatened to ruin it, Algerian Agriculture Minister Rachid Benaissa told Reuters on Wednesday.
"The recent rains have saved us. The rain fell in the regions where it was most needed," Benaissa said on the sidelines of an agriculture conference in the Moroccan city of Meknes.

Wheat Declines 0.8% to $7.71 a Bushel, Extending Yesterday’s 4.3% Slump (Source: Bloomberg)
Wheat for July delivery fell 0.8 percent to $7.71 a bushel after dropping as much as 1.5 percent to $7.66 a bushel. The contract extended a 4.3 percent decline yesterday. Corn lost 0.1 percent to $7.285 a bushel after slumping 4 percent yesterday and soybeans retreated 0.3 percent to $13.4975 a bushel.

Arabicas firm, eye 34-year peak; sugar dips
LONDON, April 28 (Reuters) - ICE arabica coffee futures rose in early trade and were within reach of a 34-year high, while sugar dipped in sight of a six-month low, pressured by ample supplies from Brazil and Thailand. Arabica coffee futures on ICE firmed, supported by a weaker dollar and tight supplies of mild washed arabicas, and were close to a 34-year peak above the psychological $3 a lb level touched on April 20.

ANRPC cuts 2011 rubber output f'cast to 10.025 mln T
SINGAPORE, April 28 (Reuters) - Global natural rubber production for 2011 may come in at 10.025 million tonnes, lower than an earlier forecast of 10.060 million tonnes due to output revisions in member countries, the ANRPC said on Thursday. 
Despite the revision, the global output for the commodity mainly used in tyre was still higher than 9.473 million tonnes in 2010, according to the Association of Natural Rubber Producing Countries (ANRPC).

Brazil CS cane crush seen up after rains - Datagro
SAO PAULO, April 27 (Reuters) - Plentiful rain has helped cane growth in Brazil's center-south, raising the amount of cane available for crushing in 2011/12 to 561 million tonnes from 550 million tonnes seen in February, Datagro analysts said on Wednesday.
But sugar output will likely total 35.15 million tonnes, up just slightly from the 35.10 million tonnes seen in February as production stands close to mills' capacity in the region.

Europe's sugar beet crop seen developing well
LONDON, April 27 (Reuters) - Sugar beet crops across Europe are developing well, although adverse weather delayed sowing in Russia and Italy, beet industry officials said.
In France, sugar beet plants are benefiting from favourable sowing conditions, with no adverse impact so far from the dryness that has been stressing winter grains.

Burkina Faso cotton growers protest low prices
BOBO-DIOULASSO, Burkina Faso, April 27 (Reuters) - Hundreds of cotton farmers marched in Burkina Faso's second-largest city on Wednesday, demanding better prices for cotton and subsidies to help them ahead of the 2011-2012 planting season.
The march in Bobo-Dioulasso follows a wave of violent protests for higher pay by soldiers and demonstrations by angry students, business people and residents against rising food prices, police brutality and crime.

Indonesian cocoa industry calls for sustainability system
JAKARTA, April 27 (Reuters) - The Indonesian Cocoa Association (Askindo) has called for government backing to regulate and promote sustainable cocoa in the world's No.3 producer, the group's chairman said on Wednesday.
A sustainable cocoa system would look at cultivation, land use practices and include traceability certificates, Zulhefi Sikumbang, chairman of Askindo, told a news conference.

China seeks Vietnam pepper, coffee growers cut trees
HANOI, April 27 (Reuters) - Chinese buyers have been in Vietnam seeking to buy black pepper at high prices, raising expectations of good gains that have prompted some coffee farmers to switch to growing pepper instead, a state-run newspaper and traders said on Wednesday.
Pepper prices in Vietnam, the world's largest producer and exporter of the spice, have more than doubled to as high as 120 million dong ($5,825) a tonne this week from 52 million dong a year ago due to production falls in many producing nations.

Silver Rally No Bubble as Price Will Top Record, Coeur d’Alene Chief Says (Source: Bloomberg)
The rally in silver to a 31-year high in New York shows no sign of ending because tight supply and robust demand will send the metal to a record, according to Coeur d’Alene Mines Corp. (CDE), the largest U.S. producer. “We’re in a legitimate market driven by financial interest in silver and strong industrial demand,” Chief Executive Officer Dennis Wheeler said today at the Bloomberg Link Precious Metals Conference in New York. “Supplies are relatively inelastic.”

Gold for Immediate Delivery Climbs to Record $1,540.45 an Ounce in Asia (Source: Bloomberg)
Gold for immediate delivery advanced as much as 0.3 percent to an all-time high of $1,540.45 an ounce in Singapore today.

Gold Rises to Record for Second Day as Fed Maintains Rate, Dollar Slumps (Source: Bloomberg)
Gold futures surged to a record for the second straight day after the U.S. Federal Reserve pledged to keep borrowing costs low, eroding prospects for the dollar and boosting demand for the metal as an alternative investment. Fed Chairman Ben S. Bernanke signaled yesterday that the central bank will maintain monetary stimulus. The Fed kept its target rate for overnight lending between banks at zero percent to 0.25 percent, while saying it will end $600 billion of bond purchases on schedule in June. The dollar fell to the lowest in more than two years against a basket of currencies.

PRECIOUS-Gold strikes record as dollar wilts
LONDON, April 28 (Reuters) - Gold hit record highs on Thursday as the dollar's three-year low against a basket of major currencies attracted non-U.S. investors, after the United States signalled it would retain accommodative monetary policy.
Spot gold  ascended to a lifetime high of $1,534.30 an ounce, breaking records for the second straight session. It traded at $1,530.54 an ounce at 1116 GMT, up from $1,526.40 late in New York on Wednesday.

METALS-Copper up on Bernanke; building inventories a concern
LONDON, April 28 (Reuters) - Copper climbed on Thursday after U.S. Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke signalled interest rates would stay low, which dented the dollar and underpinned metals, although rising inventories continued to pressure sentiment.
Benchmark copper  on the LME traded at $9,400 a tonne at 1001 GMT, up from a close of $9,321 on Wednesday.

Brazil aluminum use seen rising 13 pct in 2011
BRASILIA, April 27 (Reuters) - Brazilian consumption of aluminum products should rise around 13 percent from 2010's 1.3 million tonne total, the Brazilian Aluminum Association, ABAL, said on Wednesday.
Production of aluminum cables and wires alone should rise 58.4 percent, the association said.

Shanghai bonded copper stocks seen falling on investors - trade
HONG KONG, April 28 (Reuters) - Investors are selling more Shanghai bonded copper stocks into the local market, which could dampen domestic prices in the near term, but also help re-open the spot import arbitrage window in the coming months, trading sources said on Thursday.
The world's top copper buyer, China has bought less from the international spot market this year since bonded stocks more than doubled from December, driving down quarterly imports by 21 percent.

China Apr 11-20 daily steel output down 1.5 pct
BEIJING, April 28 (Reuters) - China's daily output of crude steel stood at 1.904 million tonnes over the April 11-20 period, down 1.5 percent compared with the previous 10 days, data from the China Iron and Steel Association showed on Thursday.
CISA said daily output over the first 20 days of this month stood at 1.918 million tonnes, suggesting that it had revised down its estimates for the first 10 days from 1.979 million tonnes to 1.933 million tonnes, according to Reuters calculations.

Crude Oil Futures Retreat From 31-Month High in N.Y. as Dollar Pares Drop (Source: Bloomberg)
Oil rose to a 31-month high in New York as the dollar weakened to its lowest level since 2008 against other major currencies and gasoline futures jumped. Crude gained 10 cents as the Dollar Index, which tracks the currency against six others, fell after Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke said yesterday that the central bank will keep record-low interest rates in place. Gasoline supplies dropped to the lowest level since 2009 in a government report yesterday.

20110429 0944 Soy Oil & Palm Oil Related News.

 Soy Oil chart reading : side way range bound little downside biased.

Soybeans (Source: CME)
US soybean futures slide for a third consecutive day on spillover weakness from corn and slowing demand. Slower Chinese demand and record South American supplies provide little incentive for buyers to underpin prices. Market draws further pressure from investors shifting positions from grains to more profitable gold and silver, said Dan Basse of AgResource Co. A weaker dollar and residual demand can't offset the bearish influence of tumbling corn prices that fell on hopes for improved planting opportunities. CBOT July soy was down 31 cents or 2.2% at $13.53 1/2 a bushel, and New crop Nov ended down 30 3/4c or 2.2% at $13.37 3/4.

Soybean Meal/Oil (Source: CME)
Soy product futures tumble in unison with soybeans, succumbing to the broader based investor selling in grain and oilseed futures. Market saw traders reduce risk exposure in the face of slower demand for soybeans, analysts say. Higher-than expected soyoil inventories reported by Census Bureau, add pressure to soyoil. Soymeal prices fell, yet Census data showing strong domestic demand for meal in March limited losses, analysts said. CBOT July soyoil ended down 2.5% at 56.93 cents per pound, and July soymeal dropped 2.1% to $354.20 per short ton.

Palm oil gains on crude; further price weakness expected
Malaysian palm oil futures rose , snapping a three-day losing streak, supported by firmer crude oil prices, although investors expect a further weakness due to a rising production cycle. "Palm oil is mostly following outside markets," said one trader. "You have crude oil trading higher ... we saw some recovery this morning."

Malaysia 10/11 soybean imports seen down-attache
WASHINGTON, April 27 (Reuters) - Following are selected highlights from a report issued by a U.S. Department of Agriculture attache in Malaysia:
"Faced with competitively priced imported soymeal, Malaysia is expected to buy less soybeans in 2010/11. However, the United States is expected to be the top supplier with a market share of 58 percent. Argentina should continue to dominate over 85 percent of the domestic soymeal import market in 2010/11 while Malaysia's imports of US soymeal are expected to plunge to only 40,000 tonnes.

Indonesia scraps soybean oil import tax in duty overhaul
JAKARTA, April 27 (Reuters) - Indonesia has scrapped import duties on a number of raw materials and goods, including soybean oil, in a drive to boost domestic manufacturing industries, a government official said.
Soybean oil, chemical feedstocks such as ethylene for plastics, and various machines for the textile and electronics industries were among 182 products that saw import duty scrapped from 5 percent previously, said Bambang Brodjonegoro, acting head of the fiscal office.