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Tireworld Insight: Rubber futures to test near-term resistance at 15,000 yuan/tonne

Although the high stockpiles of natural rubber at both the exchange and tariff-free area still weigh on the market, the rubber price is unlikely to drop much further because it had earlier dropped more than expected and Southeast Asia has finished rubber harvest.

Analysts expect the futures rubber price to fluctuate between 14,500 yuan/tonne and 15,500 yuan/tonne in the short term.

The natural rubber contracts traded on Shanghai Futures Exchange (SHFE) ended two-day losses and rebounded on March 19, with the benchmark September contract ending 1.4 percent higher at 15,260 yuan/tonne.

The Shanghai rubber, with a bigger growth margin than other futures varieties, led China's commodity market higher at the end of the trading session.

Last week saw the Shanghai benchmark rubber contract rebound about 10 percent thanks to the rumor of state reserve and speculation operations by major investors.

Rubber stocks in coastal city of Qingdao stood at 339,900 tonnes in middle February, up from 304,300 tonnes a month earlier.

The increases in rubber inventory also suggested speculators are still using the commodity as collateral for financial, where importers raise funds for more lucrative investment elsewhere, according to an earlier report by Reuters.

The Qingdao stockpile data are collected by market observers on quantities from offices in the city as the figures are not disclosed publicly.