TOKYO, May 22 (Reuters) - Key TOCOM rubber futures edged higher on Tuesday, extending gains into a second session on higher stock markets and Monday’s news of a planned rubber purchase by Thai traders, but concerns over the euro zone economy limited gains.
* The key Tokyo Commodity Exchange rubber contract for October delivery <0#2JRU:> was traded at 280.2 yen per kg as of 0939 GMT, up 1.5 yen or 0.5 percent from the previous close. Prices hit a one-week high of 282.0 yen in early trade
* Thailand, the world’s biggest rubber producer and exporter, said on Monday it would import rubber to honour overseas contracts after rain reduced supplies.
* The imports coincide with a 15 billion baht ($478 million) government intervention scheme to support rubber prices launched after farmers staged protests in January when raw rubber fell below 100 baht per kg.
* The benchmark contract had hit a low of 261.5 yen on May 17, the weakest since Jan. 5, amid worries over demand from the euro zone and China.
* Against the yen, the dollar moved little at 79.32 yen , off a three-month low below 79 yen hit on Friday.
* Japan’s benchmark Nikkei average opened up 1 percent on Tuesday, looking set to continue Monday’s technical correction as investors pick up bargains after stocks were knocked down last week by concerns about a deepening euro crisis and a strong yen.
* The euro held firm as market players reduced their bets against it, taking note of the chances that Wednesday’s informal meeting of European leaders may produce measures to bolster investor confidence in the currency zone.
* Oil prices rose on Monday after China’s premier called for more efforts to stimulate growth and as investors cautiously awaited results of Iran’s second round of revived talks with major powers over Tehran’s nuclear program.
* The following data is expected on Tuesday:
0800 OECD latest economic outlook
1145 U.S. ICSC chain stores yy Weekly
1400 U.S. Existing home sales Apr
1400 EZ Euroilstock refinery output Apr
1400 EZ Euro zone consumer confidence May
1400 U.S. Richmond Fed manufacturing, services index May
2030 U.S. API weekly crude stocks Weekly
2030 U.S. API weekly dist. stocks Weekly
2030 U.S. API weekly gasoline stk Weekly
(Reporting by Risa Maeda; Editing by Himani Sarkar)
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