Wednesday, June 1, 2011

20110601 1826 FCPO EOD Daily Chart Study.

FCPO closed : 3360, changed : -33 points, volume : lower.
Bollinger band reading : pullback correction upside biased.
MACD Histrogram : weakening, buyer taking profit.
Support : 3350, 3300, 3270, 3250 level.
Resistance : 3420, 3450, 3470, 3500 level.
Comment :
FCPO closed recorded loss with lower volume changed hand partly due to profit taking activities and after yesterday month to month export data improvement not really exciting at all.
Soy oil overnight closed little lower and currently edge up slightly but seems struglling to test higher price level after attempting for few days.
Daily chart formed a down doji bar candle with upper shadow closed nearer to middle Bollinger band level after market opened little lower, tested little higher and fall downward all the way to closed near the low of the day.
Technical reading remained showing a pullback correction upside biased market development possibly testing support near middle Bollinger band level.
When to buy : buy at support or weakness with larger cut loss and profit target.
When to sell : sell at resistant or strength with quick cut loss and profit target.

20110601 1753 FKLI EOD Daily Chart Study.

FKLI closed : 1557 changed : -0.5 points, volume : higher.
Bollinger band reading : pullback correction upside biased.
MACD Histrogram : rising, buyer in control.
Support : 1550, 1540, 1530, 1515 level.
Resistance : 1565, 1580, 1590, 1600 level.
Comment :
FKLI closed 1 tick lower with little improvement volume transacted doing half point premium compare to cash market that closed little lower while regional(Asia & European) trading mixed and overnight U.S. market surge higher.
Traders seem realising partial profit after yesterday surged.
Daily chart formed a down doji candle closed below upper Bollinger band level after market opened and edge up little higher, slide down lower before recovered slightly to closed off the low of the day.
Chart reading shows that market is having pullback correction within an upside biased market development testing support and resistance level.
When to buy : buy at support or weakness with larger cut loss and profit target.
When to sell : sell at resistant or strength with quick cut loss and profit target.

20110601 1618 Global Market & Commodities Related News.

Euro gains on Greece report, Asia shares steady
SINGAPORE, June 1 (Reuters) - The euro traded at a three-week high versus the dollar on Wednesday, buoyed by hopes for a fresh bailout package for debt-laden Greece, while Asian stocks were little changed after manufacturing data from China was largely in line with expectations.
"Our view is that Greece will get another package - perhaps with some token 'voluntary' lengthening of maturities but not significant enough to really damage private investors - and so the euro should rebound over the coming few weeks," said Rob Ryan, a FX strategist at BNP Paribas in Singapore.

US corn 0.7 pct higher as weather slows plantings
SINGAPORE, June 1 (Reuters) - U.S. corn futures rebounded on Wednesday, rising by 0.7 percent, driven higher by concerns of slow crop planting due to wet weather, but the risk of rising supplies from Russia kept wheat prices under pressure.
"G  rains were oversold on the news from Russia  as the weakness  in wheat challenged the whole market  . But t  he corn plantings data was bullish, in fact we are very concerned about food price inflation moving forwards  ," said  Jonathan Barratt  , managing director of  Commodity Broking Services  .

Vietnam coffee prices to rise in H2 on tight supply
HANOI, June 1 (Reuters) - Domestic coffee prices in Vietnam, the world's second-largest producer after Brazil, could rise more than 6 percent in the second quarter this year due to tight global supplies, the Agriculture Ministry said on Wednesday.
Rising prices may prompt Vietnamese growers to further expand their planting area or invest more to raise yields on the current trees in coming years, while roasters may have to pass on additional costs to coffee drinkers worldwide.

Brazil mid crop cocoa arrivals stutter early on
BRASILIA, May 31 (Reuters) - Deliveries of Brazil's mid-crop cocoa to warehouses in the last week continued to rise as the harvest gathers speed, but it only slightly bettered the previous week which raised doubts about its performance ahead.
Arrivals from top cocoa state Bahia rose to 64,115 60-kg bags in the week through May 29 compared with 61,774 bags in the previous week, a meager jump given the harvest is still in its first weeks, data from Bahia Commercial Association showed.

US corn planting slows due to wet eastern fields
CHICAGO, May 31 (Reuters) - U.S. farmers struggled to plant their corn crop last week, with the pace the slowest in three weeks due to wet weather, and the first condition ratings of the crop lagging last year.
For some farmers, the delays mean having to decide soon on whether to push ahead with corn seeding despite reaping lower yields, or claiming insurance, analysts said.

Cameroon cocoa exports up 18 pct y/y by end-April
YAOUNDE, May 31 (Reuters) - Cocoa exports this season from Cameroon, the world's No.5 grower, reached 188,587 tonnes by the end of April, up 18 percent year-on-year, figures from the National Cocoa and Coffee Board (NCCB) showed on Tuesday.
About 2,282 tonnes were shipped in April, down from 5,591 tonnes for the same month of the previous season, the official data showed.

Ivorian cocoa export tax to remain at current level
ABIDJAN, MAY 31 (Reuters) - The Ivorian government will maintain the current level of export tax on cocoa at 210 CFA francs ($0.46) per kilogram next season and would continue discussions to reform the sector, the World Bank said on Tuesday.
The bank had been putting pressure on the Ivory Coast to cut taxes, which it partly blames for low investments in the sector and lower prices paid to farmers.

Colombia growers raise 2011 coffee crop view
SAO PAULO, May 31 (Reuters) - Colombia's coffee crop this year is seen at 9.5 million to 10 million bags, up from 8.9 million bags in 2010, the technical manager of the National Federation of Growers, Ricardo Villaveces Pardo, said on Tuesday.
Pardo speaking with reporters at the Fourth Coffee Dinner and Forum in Sao Paulo, said that good weather and the replanting of trees was helping to improve yields.

Canada to end wheat, barley monopoly together -CWB
WINNIPEG, Manitoba, May 31 (Reuters) - Ottawa plans to end the Canadian Wheat Board's marketing monopoly on spring wheat, durum and barley crops simultaneously in August 2012, the board's chairman said after meeting with Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz on Tuesday.
Ritz made his first-ever visit as minister to the Wheat Board's Winnipeg head office for a brisk 30-minute meeting to directly inform the marketing agency of the government's plans to scrap its monopoly on western Canadian grain.

Brent oil rises toward $117 on disruption to U.S. supply
SINGAPORE, June 1 (Reuters) - Brent was steady below $117 a barrel on Wednesday, supported by disruptions to oil supplies to top consumer the United States and political upheaval in Yemen, while weak economic data from the world's largest economy weighed on the market.
"The ongoing tension in Yemen is raising concerns while crude supply disruptions are also supportive of oil prices," said Singapore-based oil analyst Serene Lim of ANZ Bank.

China on track to cut energy intensity by 20 pct
WASHINGTON, May 31 (Reuters) - China is on track to cut its energy intensity -- the amount of power consumed for every dollar of economic output -- by 20 percent from 2005 levels, a Chinese environmental policy expert said on Tuesday.
As of 2009, the most recent year considered in the report by the non-governmental Climate Policy Initiative, China is on its way to meeting its own ambitious targets for 2010, according to Qi Ye, the group's director at Tsinghua University in Beijing.

US gasoline price falls 5.5 cents to 7-week low-Govt
WASHINGTON, May 31 (Reuters) - U.S. gasoline fell to its lowest level in seven weeks and diesel fuel dropped below $4 a gallon for the first time in two months, the Energy Department said on Tuesday.
The national price for regular unleaded gasoline declined 5.5 cents over the last week to $3.79 a gallon, the department said in its weekly survey of service stations.

Copper down on concerns China to tighten monetary policy
SHANGHAI, June 1 (Reuters) - LME copper fell on Wednesday as investors turned cautious that a decline in purchasing manager indexes was not enough to end a monetary policy tightening stance by Beijing aimed at cooling inflation in the world's top copper consumer.
"I think base metal investors are cautious today after the release of the PMI data, which did not decline enough to ward off further monetary tightening by the Chinese government," Shanghai CIFCO Futures analyst Zhou Jie said.

Vale sees strong China iron demand, shares rising
RIO DE JANEIRO, May 31 (Reuters) - Demand for iron ore from China, the world's largest consumer, has not slackened despite a slowdown in other parts of that economy, an executive with Brazilian mining company Vale  said on Tuesday.
Although the Chinese government has clamped down on credit to fight inflationary pressures, infrastructure and major construction works appeared to be unaffected, said Vale's chief financial officer, Guilherme Cavalcanti.

Gold edges lower as Greek debt fears ease
SINGAPORE, June 1 (Reuters) - Spot gold edged lower on Wednesday, as easing worries about the Greek debt crisis dampened some appetite in bullion, but a weaker dollar is expected to give support to the sentiment.
"Gold has retraced a little primarily as a result of the easing in the Greece situation to certain extent," said Darren Heathcote, head of trading at Investec Australia. "It's given the market a little bit comfort that we might see a reasonable resolution."

20110601 1106 Global Market & Commodities Related News.

GLOBAL MARKETS: Euro gains on Greece report, China PMI awaited
SINGAPORE, June 1 (Reuters) - The euro traded around three-week highs versus the dollar on Wednesday, buoyed by hopes for a fresh bailout package for debt-laden Greece, while Asian stocks were little changed as traders awaited manufacturing data from China.
The China official purchasing managers' index for May is due around 0100 GMT and is expected to show a further weakening in factory activity growth as manufacturers suffer from bank credit curbs and growing power shortages.
A weak reading would underline signs of a global slowdown and could prompt investors to dump riskier assets such as equities and commodities.

OIL: Crude extends gains, focus on US oil industry data
TOKYO, June 1 (Reuters) - U.S. crude futures hovered near a three-week high on Wednesday as prices extended gains into a third straight session, helped by concerns over a disruption of supply, with a focus on weekly inventory data due from the U.S. oil industry later in the day.
The contract hit a three-week high of $103.39 on Tuesday, propped up by the closure of a pipeline carrying Canadian crude to the United States after storm-related power outages.

NATURAL GAS: Natgas ends more than 3 pct higher on hot weather
NEW YORK, May 31 (Reuters) - U.S. natural gas futures jumped on Tuesday, ending more than 3 percent higher as hot weather boosted demand for gas-fueled electricity to power air conditioning.
"I think we saw some pretty good volume," said Addison Armstrong, senior director of market research with Tradition Energy in Stamford, Connecticut. "July-like temperatures along the East Coast at the beginning of June caught the attention of the market."

EURO COAL: German nuclear decision bolsters spot
LONDON, May 31 (Reuters) - Coal prices rose by around 75 cents on Tuesday in line with stronger oil and following Germany's decision to permanently shut 8 suspended nuclear reactors by 2022.
"For once, the European basin is more interesting than the Pacific basin thanks to Germany," said Amrita Sen,analyst with Barclays Capital.

COMMODITIES: Copper and oil firm up, gold falls from 4-wk high
NEW YORK, May 31 (Reuters) - Copper, oil and soft commodities rose on Tuesday, with the red metal tapping a four-week peak on growing hopes for a second aid package for Greece and as the U.S. dollar dropped, prompting investors to seek riskier assets.
"It's a combination of investors looking for return wherever they can get it to beat inflation and it's a reaction to the U.S. dollar," said Sean McGillivray, vice president and head of asset allocation for Great Pacific Wealth Management in Oregon, said about the commodities that moved higher.

US gasoline price falls 5.5 cents to 7-week low-Govt
WASHINGTON, May 31 (Reuters) - U.S. gasoline fell to its lowest level in seven weeks and diesel fuel dropped below $4 a gallon for the first time in two months, the Energy Department said on Tuesday.
The national price for regular unleaded gasoline declined 5.5 cents over the last week to $3.79 a gallon, the department said in its weekly survey of service stations.

20110601 1035 Global Economic Related News.

South Korea: Inflation breaches BOK target for fifth month
South Korea’s inflation exceeded the central bank’s target for a fifth straight month in May, adding pressure on the bank to raise interest rates next week. Consumer prices rose 4.1% from a year earlier, after a 4.2% gain in April, Statistics Korea said yesterday in Gwacheon, south of Seoul. Prices were unchanged from April. South Korean President Lee Myung Bak has declared “war” on inflation, which has weighed on his public support ratings. (Bloomberg)

India: Growth slows to 7.8%; pressure for rate increase stays
India’s economy grew at the slowest pace in five quarters as manufacturing and services cooled, a moderation that has yet to curb pressure for more increases in interest rates to damp inflation. Gross domestic product rose 7.8% in the three months ended March 31 from a year earlier, after a revised 8.3% gain in the previous quarter, the Central Statistical Office said in a statement in New Delhi yesterday. That’s the slowest pace in five quarters. India’s inflation rate is the fastest after Russia among major emerging economies, and the Reserve Bank of India this month signaled further tightening as it raised rates for the ninth time since March 2010. (Bloomberg)

China: To clean up billions worth of local debt
China's regulators plan to shift 2-3trn yuan (USD308-463bn) of debt off local governments, sources said, reducing the risk of a wave of defaults that would threaten the stability of the world's second biggest economy. As part of Beijing's overhaul of the finances of heavily-indebted local governments, the central government would pay off some of their loans and state banks including some of the “Big Four” would be forced to take some losses on the bad debt, said the sources, both of whom have direct knowledge of the plans. Part of the debt would also be shifted to newly created companies, while private investors would be welcomed in projects previously off-limits to them, sources said. (StarBiz)

EU: Greek aid package to be decided by end of June
European Union leaders will decide on additional aid for Greece by the end of June and have ruled out a “total restructuring” of the nation’s debt, said Jean-Claude Juncker, head of the group of euro-area finance ministers. Inspectors from the EU, the International Monetary Fund and the European Central Bank are set to wrap up a review of Greece’s progress in meeting the terms of last year’s EUR110bn (USD158bn) bailout in the next few days. The EU will then formulate its plan for further aid to Greece, which remains shut out of financial markets a year after the rescue. (Bloomberg)

Spain: Central deficit narrows as Salgado urges regional cuts
Spain’s central government budget deficit fell by more than half in the first four months of the year, Finance Minister Elena Salgado said while calling on regional governments to accelerate their austerity measures. The central government reported a EUR2.45bn (USD3.53bn) deficit, or 0.22% of GDP, compared with EUR5.27bn or 0.5% of GDP, a year earlier, Salgado said at a news conference in Madrid yesterday. (Bloomberg)

US: Confidence unexpectedly drops to 6-month low Consumer sentiment unexpectedly decreased in May to the lowest level in six months as Americans grew concerned over the outlook for jobs and the economy, while a measure of home prices dropped to a nine-year low. The Conference Board’s confidence index dropped to 60.8 from a revised 66 reading in April, figures from the New York- based private research group showed today. Home prices decreased 5.1% in the first quarter from the same time in 2010, according to data from S&P/Case-Shiller. A separate report yesterday showed manufacturing cooled. Consumer finances have been squeezed by rising costs of food and fuel and erosion in home equity, causing spending to slow. (Bloomberg)

US stocks advance amid speculation about bailout for Greece
US stocks advanced, trimming the biggest monthly drop since August for the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index, amid speculation about additional aid for Greece. Apple Inc. rallied 3.1% after saying Chief Executive Officer Steve Jobs will introduce a cloud-computing product and new software next week. Intel Corp. gained 1.4% as the world’s largest chipmaker seeks to challenge tablet makers with a new type of thinner laptop called an “ultrabook.” General Dynamics Corp. climbed 4.2% after receiving a USD 744m contract from the US Navy. The S&P 500 rose 1.1% to 1,345.20 at 4pm in New York, for its fourth consecutive day of gains. The index declined 1.4% in May. The DJIA added 128.21 points, or 1%, to 12,569.79. Equities advanced even as data on consumer confidence and business activity trailed economists’ estimates. (Bloomberg)

20110601 1030 Malaysia Corporate Related News.

 KLCI chart reading :
upside biased with possible pullback correction.

Maybank-CIMB face-off over RHBCap
The country's two largest banks, Maybank and CIMB, will face-off against each other in pursuing a merger with smaller rival RHB Capital. A merger of either bank with RHBCap would create one of the largest banking groups in Southeast Asia. The two banks, in separate filings to the stock exchange late yesterday, said Bank Negara Malaysia had "no objection in principle" to them starting preliminary negotiations with RHBCap and its substantial shareholders for a possible merger. The central bank's approval for them to start talks is valid for three months, from yesterday. RHBCap, controlled by the EPF with a 45% stake, is the country's fifth largest banking group by assets. Its major shareholder, Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank (ADCB), has been looking to sell its 25% stake and had hired two foreign investment banks to run an auction on the stake sale. (BT)

MAHB mulls new airline incentive plan
Malaysia Airports Holdings (MAHB) may introduce a new incentive programme for airlines by year-end when the current programme expires. Following MAHB’s results briefing yesterday, CFO Faizal Mansor said, “The intention of the programme is to reward airlines that give us growth, and it is offered to all airlines. We always say that airline incentives are the prerogative of the airport and we may introduce a new incentive programme that could be a slight variation on the existing programme.” The incentives are provided under an Airline Recovery Programme (ARP) for airlines announced on 18 Nov 2009 and effective 3 years ending 2011. (Financial Daily)

KYM forms JV for Perak industrial park project
KYM Holdings and three other firms have formed a JV to develop a heavy industrial park in Perak to ride on Vale International’s RM9bn iron ore distribution centre nearby. The agreement was signed between KYM and Rentas Pasifik SB, Aswan Tenaga SB and Arikinta SB, to form a JV company known as Peih Holdings SB. While not disclosing the development valueor cost of the industrial park, KYM said Peih Holdings would be tasked with several responsibilities. (Financial Daily)

Tradewinds, Zelan to bid for hospital job
Tradewinds Corp has signed a MOU with Zelan to develop Hospital Pakar Kanak-Kanak, UKM through a publicprivate partnership. In a filing with Bursa Malaysia yesterday, Tradewinds said both companies would form a consortium to jointly submit the tender for the project. Tradewinds said Zelan will hold 51% stake in the consortium and it, 49%. (Financial Daily)

MSM Malaysia said to aim for RM891m in IPO
MSM’s owner of the country’s biggest sugar refiner, may raise as much as RM891m (USD295m) in IPO in Kuala Lumpur for expansion and working capital, two people familiar with the sale said. The company, a unit of stateowned Felda Global Ventures Holdings, will market shares to institutional investors at between RM3.30 and RM3.50 per share, said the people who couldn’t be named as the information isn’t public. Individual investors will get a 3% discount from the final price, one of the people said. The share sale would be Malaysia’s secondlargest since state oil and gas company Petronas spun off its petrochemicals interests in a record RM12.8bn offering in November. (Malaysian Reserve)

Malaysia Rare Earths in World’s Largest Would-Be Refinery Provoke Protests (Source: Bloomberg)
On a sweltering Sunday in April, more than 300 people pack a room above GC Curry House, a popular eatery on a tree-lined avenue in Kuantan on Malaysia’s east coast. They’re here to discuss the potential hazards of a rare- earth refinery Sydney-based Lynas Corp. is building about 25 kilometers away that will process radioactive ore into the exotic metals that go into tech gadgets, hybrid cars and weapon systems. Member of Parliament Fuziah Salleh tells the residents that the Australian company got a 12-year tax break from Malaysia even as other countries would shun the plant -- set to be the world’s largest rare-earth refinery -- because of the health risks it poses. That information draws boos from the crowd.
An audience member, Chow Kok Chew, says he used to live near a rare-earth plant in western Malaysia run by a joint venture that included Japan’s Mitsubishi Chemical Holdings Corp. (4188) and shut down in 1992. Carelessness by plant operators led to the radiation poisoning of local people’s livestock, he says.

20110601 1022 Global Market Related News.

  DJIA chart reading : pullback correction downside biased.
Hang Seng chart reading : correction range bound little downside biased.

Treasuries Snap Rally on Concern Demand Will Wane at Next Week’s Auctions (Source: Bloomberg)
Treasuries snapped a rally that sent yields to the lowest level this year on concern the decline in rates will erode demand when the U.S. sells three-, 10- and 30- year debt next week.

U.S. Consumer Sentiment Unexpectedly Falls to Six-Month Low on Job Outlook (Source: Bloomberg)
Consumer sentiment unexpectedly decreased in May to the lowest level in six months as Americans grew concerned over the outlook for jobs and the economy, while a measure of home prices dropped to a nine-year low.

No Love Lost for U.S. Debt as Bond Dealers Share Fewer Treasuries With Fed (Source: Bloomberg)
The world’s biggest bond dealers are finding fewer Treasuries to sell to the Federal Reserve as its $600 billion purchase program nears an end, a signal of rising demand even as the largest buyer steps away. The two-week moving average of bond dealers’ submissions for sales to the Fed has fallen 37 percent to $17 billion a day from the $27.3 billion peak offered in November, according to Bloomberg data. Price swings have diminished to levels last seen before the financial crisis began in 2007, helping bonds outperform stocks this month by the most since July.

Home Prices in 20 U.S. Cities Decline to Eight-Year Low, Case-Shiller Says (Source: Bloomberg)
Home prices in 20 U.S. cities dropped in March to the lowest level since 2003, showing housing remains mired in a slump almost two years into the economic recovery. The S&P/Case-Shiller index of property values in 20 cities fell 3.6 percent from March 2010, the biggest year-over-year decline since November 2009, the group said today in New York. At 138.16, the gauge was the weakest since March 2003.

Businesses Expand Less Than Forecast, Chicago Index Shows (Source: Bloomberg)
Business activity in the U.S. cooled more than forecast in May, a sign manufacturing may be leveling off after leading the recovery in the world’s largest economy. The Institute for Supply Management-Chicago Inc. said today its business barometer fell to 56.6 this month, the lowest since November 2009, from 67.6 in April. Figures greater than 50 signal expansion. Economists forecast the gauge would fall to 62, according to the median estimate in a Bloomberg News survey.

Rising Rents Risk Higher U.S. Inflation as Fed’s Rate Restraint Questioned (Source: Bloomberg)
For all the attention given to almost $4-a-gallon gas, the biggest threat to containing U.S. inflation may be the shift away from homeownership, which is pushing up the cost of leases across the nation’s 38 million rented residences. Shelter represents about 40 percent of the consumer price index excluding food and energy and accounted for almost one quarter of the 1.3 percentage point rise in April. That share has grown as falling home prices shake Americans’ confidence in housing as an investment.

Dollar Falls to 3-Week Low Versus Euro Before U.S. Hiring, Factory Data (Source: Bloomberg)
The dollar fell to a three-week low against the euro before reports likely to show U.S. companies hired fewer workers and manufacturing cooled. The U.S. currency declined against 11 of its 16 most-traded peers before the private ADP Employers Services report is released today, followed by Labor Department figures on June 3. Australia’s dollar was 0.2 percent from a four-month low against New Zealand’s before a report that economists said will show the larger nation’s economy shrank last quarter by the most in two decades.

U.S. House Defeats Debt Ceiling Measure (Source: Bloomberg)
Legislation to raise the U.S. debt limit by $2.4 trillion failed to win House approval today in a vote Democrats said was rigged to ensure its defeat. Republicans who control the House last week announced the vote as a way to demonstrate that lawmakers don’t support extending the $14.3 trillion debt limit without an agreement with President Barack Obama’s administration on significant spending cuts to curb government spending.

U.S. Stocks Advance on Speculation About Additional Bailout Aid for Greece (Source: Bloomberg)
U.S. stocks advanced, trimming the biggest monthly drop since August for the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index, amid speculation about additional aid for Greece. Apple Inc. (AAPL) rallied 3.1 percent after saying Chief Executive Officer Steve Jobs will introduce a cloud-computing product and new software next week. Intel Corp. (INTC) gained 1.4 percent as the world’s largest chipmaker seeks to challenge tablet makers with a new type of thinner laptop called an “ultrabook.” General Dynamics Corp. (GD) climbed 4.2 percent after receiving a $744 million contract from the U.S. Navy.

Debt-Ceiling Breach May Hurt Dollar More Than Treasuries, Citigroup Says (Source: Bloomberg)
A breach of the U.S. debt ceiling may affect the dollar more than Treasuries because international holders of the debt may view the risk of permanent losses greater than domestic investors, according to Citigroup Inc. “The foreign exchange reaction to a debt ceiling breach would be sharper and probably more permanent,” Steven Englander, the head of Group of 10 foreign-exchange strategy in New York at Citigroup, wrote in a note today. “It would legitimately tax foreign investor patience and lead to further dollar dumping whenever the opportunity arises.”

Dollar Comeback Produces Best Asset Returns for First Time Since November (Source: Bloomberg)
The dollar beat stocks, commodities and bonds in its first monthly gain since November, as the euro- region debt crisis deepened and evidence mounted that the global economic recovery is losing momentum.

China May Shift Local Government Debt, Reuters Says (Source: Bloomberg)
China’s regulators plan to shift as much as 3 trillion yuan ($463 billion) of debt off of local governments, reducing the possibility of defaults that could threaten stability, Reuters said, citing unidentified people.

China ups power prices as shortages loom
BEIJING, May 30 (Reuters) - China said on Monday it would raise electricity prices for some users by about 3 percent, the first increase since 2009 as it tackles its worst power shortage in seven years.
The power price rise affects industrial, commercial and agricultural users in 15 provinces, state media said after a briefing by the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), China's top economic planning agency.

China's commodities imports to stage comeback
SHANGHAI, May 31 (Reuters) - There are early signs that China's appetite for overseas oil, copper, aluminium, iron ore and coal will recover in the second half of 2011, having been dogged for much of the first half by the government's campaign to put the brakes on growth and inflation.
Higher seasonal demand, shrinking stockpiles and a narrowing gap between domestic and LME prices indicate that China's copper demand may be turning a corner, even if Beijing doesn't relax its tightening stance.

Japanese Stocks Swing Between Gains, Losses; Kansai Electric Declines (Source: Bloomberg)
Japanese stocks swung between gains and losses as utilities fell on the cost of the Fukushima nuclear disaster and exporters advanced after the yen weakened.

EU Rules Out ‘Total Restructuring’ of Greek Debt, Deal Seen by End of June (Source: Bloomberg)
European Union leaders will decide on additional aid for Greece by the end of June and have ruled out a “total restructuring” of the nation’s debt, said Jean-Claude Juncker , head of the group of euro-area finance ministers.

Euro zone May inflation slows, ECB hike still seen
BRUSSELS, May 31 (Reuters) - Euro zone inflation slowed in May largely thanks to lower oil prices, but the dip is likely to be temporary and will not stop the European Central Bank from raising interest rates in July.
European Union statistics office Eurostat estimated that inflation in the 17 countries using the euro was 2.7 percent year-on-year this month, down from 2.8 percent in April.

Greece bailout hopes lift euro and stocks
LONDON, May 31 (Reuters) - The euro rose to a three-week high against the dollar on Tuesday, while world stocks and oil prices advanced on a report that Germany could make concessions to facilitate a new aid package for Greece.
"There's quite a big risk premium in euro based on Greek default concerns, so if Germany lends more money to get them through to 2013, the chances of a disorderly restructuring further down the line become much reduced," Adrian Schmidt, currency analyst at Lloyds Banking Group, said.

Australia’s Dollar Trades Near Four-Month Low Versus Kiwi Before GDP Data (Source: Bloomberg)
Australia’s dollar traded 0.2 percent from a four-month low against its New Zealand counterpart before a report today forecast to show the larger nation’s gross domestic product shrank last quarter. The so-called Aussie also maintained losses against most major counterparts before data that economists said will show manufacturing slowed in China, Australia’s biggest trade partner. The South Pacific currencies were supported as stocks and commodities rose, buoying demand for higher-yielding assets.

FOREX-Euro climbs on Greek aid report, gains capped
LONDON, May 31 (Reuters) - The euro hit a three-week high against the dollar on Tuesday after a report said Germany could make concessions on efforts to put together a bailout for Greece, helping to ease fears over a Greek debt restructuring.
The single currency rose to $1.4425 according to electronic trading platform EBS, but further gains were capped by offers seen above that level, while technical resistance loomed around $1.4450.

20110601 1019 Global Commodities Related News.

Corn (Source: CME)
US corn futures close lower as Russia fuels fears of reduced demand by confirming it will restart grain exports. Russia is expected to export grain to Asian buyers that will replace corn as animal feed. "The popular idea is that Russia has a bunch of poor wheat that they will sell into the Far East," says Sid Love, analyst for Kropf & Love Consulting. End-of-the-month fund selling and forecasts for favorable crop weather in the US Midwest add pressure to prices, traders note. CBOT July corn slide 11c at $7.47 1/2 a bushel.

Wheat (Source: CME)
US wheat futures finish sharply lower on expectations exporters will lose business to Russia when it returns to the global market. Russia's government confirmed it will lift a nearly year-long grain-export ban July 1 amid expectations for large harvests. "They tend to be the low price leaders in the world wheat trade," says Dale Durchholz, analyst for AgriVisor. Russia's move followed Ukraine's decision last week to abolish existing grain export quotas. CBOT July wheat falls 37 1/2c to $7.82 1/4 a bushel; KCBT July wheat loses 35c to $9.08; MGE July sinks 31 1/4c to $10.25.

Rice (Source: CME)
US rice futures end lower with the wheat markets amid expectation for reduced demand. Russia's plan to re-enter the global grain trade knocked down wheat, dragging down rice as both are global food staples. End-of-month profit-taking adds pressure, traders say. Market participants will digest weekly crop data due at 4:00pm EDT for updates on US rice planting and crop development. Progress has been delayed so far this spring by persistent rains in the southern US. CBOT July rice stumbles 12 1/2c to $15.06 per hundredweight.

Rabobank: China 2011 Corn Imports To At Least Double (Source: CME)
China's corn imports this year will likely rise several times over last year's volume as increasing rural incomes underpin steady growth in pork consumption, a senior agriculture industry analyst with Rabobank International said. "It's hard to estimate [this year's corn import volume] exactly, but it may be several times larger than last year," said Chenjun Pan, a Beijing-based expert on food and agribusiness research for the bank, agreeing that this would mean at least double last year's volume. Corn is an important component of feedmeal for the rising hog population in China, which has sharply rebounded from the culling that followed outbreaks of foot-and-mouth disease and swine flu in previous years. China's hog population is likely to rise 1% this year from 453 million heads in 2010, driving historic increases in China's corn imports, she said. "The (demand) pressure on corn is coming from large hog farms that are entering the industry, while small farms are exiting the industry," she said.
Smaller hog farms tend to rely less on corn for feed purposes, using more non-conventional byproducts of rice and wheat crops, whereas large-scale farms use conventional feed in which corn is a heavily featured component, Pan said. Last year, China imported 1.6 million metric tons of corn, a 15-year high that was 17 times larger than the volume imported in 2009. This year, the country is estimated to have already purchased more than 1 million tons of corn as of last month.

French Wheat Harvest Will Suffer From Drought (Source: CME)
France's worst drought on record is set to weigh heavily on its wheat harvest, French Agriculture Minister Bruno Le Maire said, and that could further increase global wheat prices. According to a report released by French government weather agency Meteo France, this spring has been both the warmest and the driest on record, with a higher average temperature and less rain than in 1976, which had the most severe drought since the agency began compiling the data. The impact of the damage will depend on the weather in the coming weeks. A hot summer would make things worse and lead to an even lower yield from the wheat crop, while rain could improve the situation. Overall, some damage to France's wheat crop is already unavoidable, Le Maire said. "It is impossible to know the loss of yield now, but we already know there will be a loss," Le Maire told reporters. France is Western's Europe's largest producer of soft wheat: a low-protein variety used to make pastries and snack foods.
It also can be used as a feed for animals, and already prices have been rising as the drought in France and parts of Germany has left farmland parched. About half of France is under water rationing, facing restrictions on watering gardens, filling private swimming pools and washing cars. Hydropower plants have also limited their production as reservoirs are emptying fast. If the drought were to worsen, nuclear power plants may have to cut back generation because of a lack of water to cool nuclear reactors. Electricite de France (EDF.FR), the country's only nuclear generator, said there is no indication that any of its 58 plants is close to that situation. Forecasters say the Paris new-crop November milling-wheat contract may revisit February's three-year highs of EUR281 per ton. Benchmark wheat price rose 1.4% to a high of EUR242 a metric ton. In the year to June, the country yielded about 37.14 million tons of soft wheat and exported a record 12.8 million tons.
Traders now estimate the drought could cut that exportable surplus to just 5 million tons in 2011-12.

Wheat slides as Russia to resume exports
SYDNEY, May 31 (Reuters) - U.S. wheat futures  slid in Asian trade after Russia said it was ending its export ban and could ship up to 20 million tonnes of grain from this year's crop. Prime Minister Vladimir Putin announced at the weekend that the Russia, formerly the world's third-largest wheat exporter, would lift a grain export ban from July 1.

Western Australia grain crop gets a boost from rains
SYDNEY, May 31 (Reuters) - Western Australia, a top grain producing state, received substantial rainfall this week, boosting hopes for a robust winter crop after a 16 month drought, but analysts said it was too early to call an end to the dry spell.
"This rain has really been a godsend to really get the season going before we hit the winter months." Wayne Gordon, a senior commodities analysts at Rabobank said on Tuesday.
"But I think it's probably too early to be saying that the season is in the bag as you would say," he added.

China expects bumper wheat harvest despite drought -ag ministry
BEIJING, May 31 (Reuters) - China, the world's top wheat producer, is likely to reap a bumper wheat harvest in 2011 despite drought earlier this year in most of its wheat-growing areas in the north, the agriculture ministry said.
China's winter wheat, accounting for more than 90 percent of the country's total wheat harvest, may increase for the eighth year, agriculture minister Han Changfu was cited as saying in a report posted on the ministry's web site. Han did not give any figures.

W.Canada crop planting 73 pct done, forecast grim
WINNIPEG, Manitoba, May 30 (Reuters) - Crop planting on the Canadian Prairies has climbed to nearly three-quarters complete, equaling progress from a year ago, but cool, wet temperatures this week may prematurely end planting in some areas, a Canadian Wheat Board official said on Monday.
Canada is the biggest exporter of spring wheat, durum, oats and canola.
Farmers made good progress from the 53 percent completion level of a week ago, but rain on Monday and Tuesday is expected to cover most of the Prairies, including the wettest regions of south-central and eastern Saskatchewan as well as western Manitoba.

EU wheat falls as Russia says will end export ban
HAMBURG, May 30 (Reuters) - Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said on Saturday Russia will lift a grain export ban from July 1, resuming international sales from what was formerly the world's third-largest wheat exporter. "This announcement by Russian prime minister Putin is likely to been seen by the wheat market as a sign that this...region is expected to ease the otherwise tight global market," Germany's Commerzbank said in a report. A resumption of Russian exports after the ban imposed last August following a drought-ravaged harvest had been widely expected but the announcement by Putin still stirred the market.

Buyers cool as Russia eyes big grain exports
MOSCOW, May 30 (Reuters) - Russia geared up to ship as much as much as 20 million tonnes of new-harvest grain to tight markets after lifting its export ban at the weekend, but buyers said the Black Sea powerhouse had to prove its reliability anew.
The head of Russia's Grains Union lobby said Russia could export 20 million tonnes of grain from this year's crop if the harvest reaches 85-90 million tonnes, in line with official forecasts.
"The export potential is 15 million. Maybe we can even export 20 million if the harvest reaches 85-90 million tonnes," Arkady Zlochevsky said.

Egypt says will be cautious over Russian wheat
CAIRO, May 30 (Reuters) - Egypt, the world's biggest wheat importer, said on Monday it welcomed the lifting of a Russian grain export ban but would exercise caution in its purchases from grower which had once been its biggest supplier.
Nomani Nomani, vice chairman of the General Authority for Supply Commodities (GASC), told Reuters that GASC had sufficient funds to finance wheat purchases in international tenders and that economic problems following an uprising that ousted former President Hosni Mubarak have not affected its budget.

Indonesia sees higher 2011 rice output, no need for imports
JAKARTA, May 30 (Reuters) - Indonesia sees higher unmilled rice paddy output of 70.6 million tonnes this year, leading to a greater surplus that means there is no need for further imports of the staple in 2011, said an agriculture ministry official.
This was up 2.6 percent from the ministry's previous December forecast, and the comments may weigh on regional prices since bumper purchases by the country surprised markets in the first quarter and had led to the possibility of more in 2011.
The ministry's previous forecast was for 68.8 million tonnes, while Indonesia's statistics bureau said in March it expected output up 1.4 percent to 67.31 million tonnes of unmilled grain this year.

Vietnam Coffee-Prices advance as stocks shrink
HANOI, May 31 (Reuters) - Vietnam is the world's top robusta producer and slow sales there, along with an expected fall in output in second-biggest robusta producer Indonesia, could tighten supplies of the bitter variety in coming weeks and push up prices.
Vietnamese coffee stocks available for sale now are estimated at between 150,000 tonnes to 245,000 tonnes, or 2.5 million to 4.08 million bags, traders said.
The estimated average inventory level would represent a drop of 23.5 percent from the 4.3 million bags estimated at the end of May 2010.

Brazil coffee zone set for chill, frost unlikely
BRASILIA, May 30 (Reuters) - A hilly corner of Brazil's top coffee state, Minas Gerais, is expected to see temperatures dip as low as 2 Celsius on Monday night, forecaster Somar said on Monday, but it said the chance of frost was "low".
Monday's expected cold snap should be shortlived, with the minimum temperature rising to 5 Celsius by Tuesday night, still fairly low for the time of year. But a weak polar air mass causing the chill would dissipate in a few days, Somar said.

Ivorian cocoa arrivals hit 1,103,166 T by May 22
ABIDJAN, May 30 (Reuters) - Cocoa arrivals at ports in top grower Ivory Coast increased by over 14 percent compared with a year ago, but exporters said they were worried about the size and quality of beans coming out of the bush.
Exporters had estimated arrivals of 1,093,000 tonnes for the period.
Exporters said they expected arrivals to reach around 1,128,000 tonnes by May 29, with about 25,000 tonnes of beans delivered to the ports of Abidjan and San Pedro between May 23 to May 29.

Australia's Queensland To Ban Mining On Key Agricultural Land (Source: CME)
The government of Australia's coal-rich Queensland state said it will prohibit mining on a vast area it considers the best land for crops, clashing with some in the mining industry who warn the move will deter investment. Environment and Resource Management Minister Kate Jones released maps covering 4.78 million hectares, including much of southern Queensland, that she said will be granted protection. Mining and other development projects that aren't well advanced in the approvals process will now be subject to the legislation when it is introduced later in the year, she said. "Through this policy, we are protecting our important food bowls across the state," Jones said in a statement. "New mining projects that will permanently render strategic cropping land unusable in the protection areas will not be able to go ahead." She said the state government will soon release a draft planning policy to ensure approvals for development include appropriate consideration of agricultural land.
Queensland is the world's largest exporter of seaborne coking coal, with the Bowen Basin region accounting for almost 40% of global output of the raw material in steel production. Australia is expected to produce 163 million metric tons of coking coal and 232 million tons of thermal coal this year, driven by strong economic growth in developing Asian economies which is underpinning demand for steel, according to data released in March by the Australian Bureau of Agriculture and Resource Economics and Sciences. The Queensland government expects its policy on agricultural land will be replicated in other states. Neighboring New South Wales to the south last week placed an immediate 60-day moratorium on granting new coal, coal seam gas and petroleum exploration licenses in a move it said was aimed at striking a balance between agriculture, mining and energy. The government said all new drilling and mining applications would now need to include an agriculture impact statement and be opened for public comment.
The Association of Mining and Exploration Companies, an industry body, said the areas defined by the Queensland government for protection are so vast they will impede the mining industry. "Queensland would be an economic wreck without mining, yet the state government seems determined to ignore the financial impact of ruling out mining across a massive area," said Ross Musgrove, state manager for the association. "This wholesale mining lockout will scare potential investors and raise doubts about the sovereign risk attached to doing business in Queensland." Amec members include Anglo American PLC, Fortescue Metals Group Ltd. and Teck Resources Ltd.

Shipping Rates Seen Dropping as French Wheat Cargoes Sink: Freight Markets (Source: Bloomberg)
The 59 percent drop in French wheat shipments in the past two months means no return to panic buying from northern African nations and a 25 percent slump in freight costs in the third quarter. Shipments from Rouen, France’s biggest grain hub, fell to 99,585 metric tons in the week ended May 25, from 242,187 tons at the end of March, port data show. Third-quarter rates for handysizes, the ships most commonly used at Rouen, will drop to $8,600 a day, from $11,526 now, said Martin Korsvold from Pareto Securities AS, whose ratings on shipping lines returned 16 percent in a year. Investors are anticipating no such decline in wheat, with futures on the Chicago Board of Trade, a global benchmark, predicting rising prices for at least two more years.

Commodities See Biggest Monthly Drop in a Year (Source: Bloomberg)
Commodities posted the biggest monthly drop in a year as the sovereign-debt crisis in Europe and accelerating inflation in China fanned speculation that global economic growth will slow. This month, the Standard & Poor’s GSCI Spot Index of 24 raw materials dropped 6.8 percent, the first decline since August and the biggest drop since May 2010. Silver led the slide, slumping 21 percent, followed by nickel, and crude oil slid almost 10 percent. The gauge gained 1.2 percent today.

Holdings in physical copper ETP up by 122T TO 3,399T
LONDON, May 27 (Reuters) - The amount of copper held to back the physical copper exchange traded product  rose by 122 tonnes to 3,399 tonnes as of May 26, according to ETF Securities' website on Friday.
Total holdings in the physical tin ETP  fell by 45 tonnes to 165 tonnes, the data showed.

Commod index investments rise 5 pct in April
NEW YORK, May 27 (Reuters) - Net long index investment into commodity markets rose for a fifth month in April, up 5 percent or $13 billion from the previous month as passive investors piled into the market just ahead of the biggest correction since 2008.
Net long holdings rose to a total $256 billion in April, with long-only indexes adding $22.4 billion to $358.4 billion to extend a months-long trend, according to the Commodity Futures Trading Commission's monthly report on futures positions connected to index-based investment.

World copper demand growth to slow in '11, cautious on
SHANGHAI, May 29 (Reuters) - Global demand growth for copper is expected to slow to 8.4 percent in 2011-12, slowing substantially from the average growth of 16.4 percent between 2005-2010, the International Wrought Copper Council (IWCC) said.
China's demand for the red metal, used extensively in the electrical manufacturing, construction and power sectors, is expected to grow by 7 percent this year, down from a double-digit growth in 2010, the general secretary of the International Wrought Copper Council Mark Loveitt said on Sunday.

Japan April copper exports plunge 51 pct yr/yr
TOKYO, May 30 (Reuters) - Japan's refined copper exports plunged 51 percent in April from a year earlier to 23,582 tonnes for a seventh straight month of year-on-year declines, partly reflecting weak demand from China, the world's top consumer of the metal.
The Ministry of Finance data showed on Monday that of total copper exports, 29 percent went to China, down sharply from 48.5 percent in March, while Taiwan was the top importer of refined copper from Japan accounting for 32 percent, up from 21 percent in March.

Chile April copper output down 3.9 pct vs year-ago
SANTIAGO, May 30 (Reuters) - Chile's copper output  fell 3.9 percent in April compared with a year earlier to 438,340 tonnes, the National Statistics Institute (INE) said on Monday.
April was the third straight month that copper production fell from a year earlier in Chile, the world's top producer.

China crude steel output seen at 680 mln T in 2011-planning official
SHANGHAI, May 29 (Reuters) - China, the world's largest steel producer, is expected to produce a record 680 million tonnes of crude steel this year, a senior official at an industry planning institute said, as demand remains strong in the investment-driven economy.
"Steel production will still see high growth, despite that Beijing may make further tightening moves in the second half of this year," Li Xinchuang, head of the China Metallurgical Industry Planning and Research Institute, told a conference.

Japan April zinc exports plunge 40 pct yr/yr
TOKYO, May 30 (Reuters) - Japan's refined zinc exports for April plunged 40 percent from a year earlier to 5,047 tonnes, widening from March's year-on-year decrease of 34.6 percent, Ministry of Finance data showed on Monday.
The wider year-on-year drop in April reflected the impact from a March 11 earthquake which devastated northeast Japan and shut nearly 65 percent of the country's production capacity of   zinc, used in automotive steel sheet and construction materials.

China lead TCs up 20 pct in May, could rise further
HONG KONG, May 31 (Reuters) - Treatment charges that Chinese smelters receive for converting spot lead concentrates into metal may rise further after gains of 20 percent in the past month, which could prompt higher output in the fourth quarter, industry sources said on Tuesday.
Spot TCs in the world's top lead importer traded at $120-$150 a tonne versus about $100 in April for lead concentrate with low levels of silver content, the most popular type. TCs traded at about $180 for concentrate with high contained silver.

China tightens controls over lead-battery powered e-bikes
HONG KONG, May 31 (Reuters) - China plans to phase out battery-powered electric-bicycles (e-bikes) that exceed speed and weight limits published 12 years ago, a move that could force small manufacturing plants to close and cut demand for lead in the world's top consumer of the metal.
A statement posted on Tuesday on the Ministry of Industry and information Technology website requires local governments, police, regional industry and commerce offices to tighten management of e-bike manufacturing plants and use by e-bikers.

Japan April rare earths imports from China up 2.6 pct m/m
TOKYO, May 30 (Reuters) - Japan's imports of rare earths from China inched up 2.6 percent in April from March but some market players say demand may slow in the third quarter, partly because stocks were likely to be unused in the wake of the March earthquake.
Imports of rare earths from China stood at 1,646 tonnes in April, finance ministry data showed, up from 1,603.6 tonnes in March. China accounted for about 73 percent of Japan's rare earths imports in April.

METALS-Copper hits four-week high as euro gains
LONDON, May 31 (Reuters) - Copper rose to a four-week high on Tuesday, supported by a firmer euro after expectations built that a second aid package would be agreed for Greece.
London Metal Exchange copper for delivery in three months  traded at $9,237 a tonne in official rings from a close of $9,199 on Friday. It hit $9,251 a tonne, its highest since May 4.

PRECIOUS-Gold steadies near 4-week high; Greece in focus
LONDON, May 31 (Reuters) - Gold steadied around its highest in nearly four weeks on Tuesday, supported by investor nervousness over the race in Europe to avert a Greek debt default, although stronger equities and oil tempered gains.
A Wall Street Journal report that Germany could make concessions on efforts to put together a bailout for Greece lifted the euro and boosted equities and base metals at the expense of perceived safe-havens such as gold or bonds.

Oil Rises for Third Day on Optimism Over Greek Aid; U.S. Supplies May Drop (Source: Bloomberg)
Oil gained for a third day in New York as signals that the European Union will approve aid for Greece without forcing a debt default stoked speculation fuel demand will increase.

20110601 1017 Soy Oil & Palm Oil Related News.

Soy Oil chart reading : side way range bound.

Soybeans (Source: CME)
US soybean futures drifted lower, succumbing to spillover weakness from neighboring grain futures and weather forecasts suggesting less acreage switching from corn to soybeans. The soybean market got caught up in the sharp declines of wheat and corn, with weather promoting corn seedings in the eastern Midwest this week and reducing the threat of increased soybean plantings, says Mike Zuzolo of Global Commodity Analytics and Consulting. Further pressure was received from slower demand, while weakness in the US dollar limited price declines. CBOT July soybeans end down 0.3% at $13.76/bushel.

Soybean Meal/Oil (Source: CME)
Soy-product futures inch lower, sliding on a retreat in soybean futures and end-of-month position evening. However, support from a weaker US dollar and rising crude-oil futures limited declines. CBOT July soyoil end down 0.2% at 58.49c/pound and July soymeal drops 0.1% to $355.30/short ton.

Palm eases after surveyor confirms strong export trend
KUALA LUMPUR, May 31 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil futures eased as some traders booked profits after a cargo surveyor confirmed a strong export trend, with the market on track for its best monthly performance this year.
"Exports will set market direction. Stocks will be growing but its impact on prices will be moderate because strong demand due to the weaker ringgit and restocking will keep prices higher," said a trader with a foreign commodities brokerage.

India's 2011/12 soybean area seen down on cotton rally
MUMBAI, May 31 (Reuters) - Soybean acreage in India is likely to edge lower in 2011/12 as cotton could replace it in some areas after the fibre crop gave much higher returns to farmers than the oilseed, industry and government officials said.
Soybean is the main summer-sown oilseed crop in the south Asian country and fluctuation in output dictates India's edible oil imports, mainly of palm and soyoil, and oilmeal exports.
It is mainly a rain-fed crop for the world's biggest importer of edible oil, and the monsoon rains -- expected to be normal this year -- play a crucial part in deciding yields.

Brazil soy crop sales reach 67 pct - Celeres
SAO PAULO, May 30 (Reuters) - Sales of Brazil's record 72.55-million-tonne soybean crop were well ahead of last year at this time as strong prices and demand are driving deals, analysts Celeres said on Monday.
In its latest weekly report, Celeres said sales of the current crop that ended harvesting earlier in May stood at 67 percent by May 27, up from 59 percent of the previous crop at this time last year. Sales of the crop were on par with historical averages, however.

Argentine economy thrives as grain, soy prices soar
ROSARIO, Argentina, May 30 (Reuters) - High grain and soybean prices have driven global food inflation to the point of causing  riots in Africa, but no one is complaining on the banks of the Parana River in Argentina's central farm belt.
In the port city of Rosario, profits from grains exports have funded construction of some of Argentina's tallest skyscrapers over the last year, helping to make Argentina's devastating 2001/02 financial crisis a distant memory.