* Prices hit 2,375 ringgit, level last seen on April 11
* Palm oil's target of 2,388 ringgit confirmed -technicals
* Malaysian markets closed for holiday on Friday
By Chew Yee Kiat
SINGAPORE, May 23 (Reuters) - Malaysian palm oil futures
rose on Thursday to their highest in more than a month,
stretching gains to a third straight week as investors hoped for
a recovery in demand ahead of the Muslim fasting month of
Higher export demand as buyers restock ahead of the event in
July and easing production could trim stocks further in the
world's second largest producer, whose inventory fell to 1.93
million tonnes by the end of April.
But bullish sentiment was contained ahead of the long
weekend and as traders look out for further exports data due
next week. The Malaysian financial markets will be closed on
Friday for a public holiday.
"Although production looks likely to be lower, stocks level
at the end of the month will really depend on how exports
perform for the last ten days. Resistance is at 2,400 ringgit,"
said a trader with a domestic commodities brokerage in Kuala
The benchmark August contract on the Bursa Malaysia
Derivatives Exchange gained 0.5 percent to close at 2,370 ($782)
ringgit per tonne, slightly off its high at 2,375 ringgit, a
level last seen on April 11.
Total traded volumes were 32,836 lots of 25 tonnes each,
slightly lower than the usual 35,000 lots.
Technical analysis is bullish as it showed a target at 2,388
ringgit per tonne had been confirmed for palm oil, as it has
pierced above a resistance at 2,362 ringgit, Reuters market
analyst Wang Tao said.
For the week, prices posted a gain of 1.5 percent, despite
weaker exports data for the first 20 days of May, as investors
look to restocking demand to support prices.
In other markets, oil fell below $102 a barrel on Thursday
in a broader commodities selloff as a decline in China's factory
activity entrenched concern about weak demand and on worries
about an early scale-back in Federal Reserve stimulus.
In vegetable oil markets, U.S. soyoil for July delivery
fell 0.4 percent in late Asian trade. The most-active
September soybean oil contract on the Dalian Commodities
Exchange fell 0.8 percent.
Palm, soy and crude oil prices at 1004 GMT
Contract Month Last Change Low High Volume
MY PALM OIL JUN3 2340 +12.00 2325 2348 458
MY PALM OIL JUL3 2375 +13.00 2346 2380 4921
MY PALM OIL AUG3 2370 +11.00 2342 2375 17858
CHINA PALM OLEIN SEP3 6048 -54.00 6034 6130 435272
CHINA SOYOIL SEP3 7464 -58.00 7456 7582 842904
CBOT SOY OIL JUL3 49.42 -0.22 49.33 49.83 6626
NYMEX CRUDE JUL3 93.05 -1.23 92.67 94.18 33316
Palm oil prices in Malaysian ringgit per tonne
CBOT soy oil in U.S. cents per pound
Dalian soy oil and RBD palm olein in Chinese yuan per tonne
Crude in U.S. dollars per barrel
(Editing by Clarence Fernandez)