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Evening markets: oilseeds party reaches Paris

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Paris at last joined in the oilseeds party which drove Malaysia and Chicago to fresh highs, and even Matif wheat showed some nimble steps.

Rapeseed has lagged its vegetable oil peers, palm oil and soybeans, during the two-month rally prompted by concerns over supplies. Traders have feared for soybean stocks, in particular, which have been squeezed by a weak Argentine harvest, and strong demand in China, which is focusing on other crops.

Indeed, July palm oil closed 4.1% higher at 2,701 ringgit a tonne on Monday, an eight-month closing high, albeit below the 2,798 ringgit a tonne hit earlier.

"Prices moved too fast, so people were tempted to take profits," a Kuala Lumpur trader said.

Rapeseed steps up

Paris rapeseed couldn't match palm for percentage gains. Even so, the August contract's E9.50, or 3.2%, rise to E311.25 a tonne was the best performance for a leading contract for nearly five months, and left rape at a five-month closing high.

New crop contracts moved in step, with November also adding E9.50 a tonne, as did May, August and November 2010, taking the last two to E321.25 a tonne apiece. February 2010 was the best performer, adding E10.25 to E321.75 a tonne.

And wheat moved sharply higher, as Friday's sharply higher close in Chicago – when Paris was closed - proved more than a match for lingering concerns of bumper supplies. Nascent fears for Russian and Ukraine crops, following dry weather, did their bit too.

Paris May wheat added E3.75 to E145.75 a tonne, with August up E3.25 at E144.75 a tonne. (London was closed for a holiday.)

Tale of two wheats

Chicago wheat moved even more sharply in the opposite direction, however, on profit taking fuelled by rumours that farmers had made up ground planting the US spring crop.

"At this stake, it looks like there was been some progress made," Toby Hassall, at Commodity Warrants Australia, told Reuters, the news agency.

May wheat was 4.0% lower at $5.35 a bushel at 17:30 GMT, with new crop contracts similarly affected. December wheat, for instance, stood 3.6% lower at $5.96 ½ a bushel.

Even soybeans lost some of their party spirit, with the May contract up just 3 cents at $11.05 a bushel, which would still represent a seven-month closing high, but is way below the $11.33 ¼ hit earlier.

Juice sweet

Among softs, cocoa too was left out of the action, slipping $1 to $2,314 a tonne in New York to remain near eight-week lows. Traders blamed recent weak grindings data and promising crop reports.

Even sugar took a break following Friday's climb on fears for domestic production in India, the world's biggest sugar consumer. New York's July contract lost 0.12 cents to close at 14.93 cents a pound, with traders blaming the slip on profit taking.

Orange juice, however, returned from the sidelines amid renewed concerns of drought in Florida, the main US citrus growing state, much of which has not seen significant rain since late March. July orange juice soared 4.45 cents to 88.70 cents a pound.

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