Gasoline Rises as Pump Price Extends Gains: Commodities at Close

The Standard & Poor’s GSCI gauge of 24 commodities climbed 0.7 percent to 697.25 at 4:45 p.m. in London. The UBS Bloomberg CMCI index of 26 raw materials was up 0.2 percent at 1,614.687. In the GSCI, silver was up the most, at 1.9 percent, and coffee was down the most, at 3 percent.

OIL PRODUCTS

Gasoline advanced for the first time in five days after reports that U.S. gasoline stockpiles fell last week and American companies increased hiring in February.

Gasoline for April delivery rose 1.4 percent to $3.2736 a gallon on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Prices have gained 22 percent this year, making gasoline the best-performing commodity in the Standard & Poor’s GSCI gauge of commodities.

Regular gasoline at the pump, averaged nationwide, fell 0.3 cent to $3.761 a gallon yesterday, according to AAA data. Prices have increased 15 percent this year, and are 7.2 percent higher than a year earlier.

April-delivery heating oil slipped 0.02 cent to $3.188 a gallon on the exchange. Prices are up 8.6 percent this year.

Total SA sold gasoline for immediate loading in northwest Europe for a fourth day. The fuel’s premium to Brent, its crack, rose for the first time in four days.

Kuwait Petroleum International Ltd., a unit of Kuwait Petroleum Corp., sold two cargoes of naphtha from its Milazzo refinery on the Italian island of Sicily for loading this month, a company official said.

Gasoline barges for immediate loading in Amsterdam- Rotterdam-Antwerp traded at $1,098 and $1,100 a metric ton, according to a survey of traders and brokers monitoring the Argus Bulletin Board. That’s within the range of yesterday’s trades from $1,082 to $1,100.

Oil Products Europe: NI OPEMKT Gasoline: NI GASOLINE Heating oil: NI HEATOIL

BASE METALS

Copper swung between gains and losses in New York as investors weighed shrinking stockpiles of the metal against signals of slowing economies in leading consuming nations.

Copper for May delivery climbed 0.9 percent to $3.7715 a pound on the Comex in New York. The LME’s three-month contract gained 00.2 percent to $8,305 a metric ton.

Nickel for three-month delivery on the LME advanced 0.9 percent to $18,920 a ton. Canceled warrants jumped 19 percent to 5,400 tons, the highest level since Dec. 15, equating to 5.5 percent of LME inventories of the metal.

Aluminum, tin and zinc dropped on the LME. Lead gained.

Base metals markets: NI BMMKTS

PRECIOUS METALS

Gold rebounded from a five-week low amid renewed optimism that Greece will be able to tame its debt crisis and as a report showed increased U.S. hiring.

Gold futures for April delivery gained 0.3 percent to $1,676.40 on the Comex in New York. Prices retreated 2.9 percent in the previous three sessions.

Silver futures for May delivery gained 1.9 percent to $33.395 an ounce in New York. Yesterday, prices slid to $32.49, the lowest since Jan. 25. Still, it’s the best-performing precious metal this year with a gain of 17 percent through yesterday.

Precious metal markets: NI PCMKTS

CRUDE OIL

Oil rose from a two-week low in New York as investors with 58 percent of the Greek bonds eligible for the nation’s debt swap indicated they’ll participate.

Crude oil for April delivery climbed 70 cents, or 0.7 percent, to $105.40 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract yesterday fell $2.02 to $104.70 a barrel, the lowest settlement since Feb. 17. Prices are 6.6 percent higher this year.

Brent oil for April settlement increased 79 cents, or 0.6 percent, to $122.77 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange.

Crude oil futures: NI CRMKTS

SOFT COMMODITIES

Arabica-coffee futures in New York dropped for the fourth straight session, touching a 16-month low, on signs of ample supplies. Sugar fell while cocoa rose.

Arabica-coffee futures for May delivery fell 3 percent to $1.8725 a pound on ICE Futures U.S. in New York, after touching $1.87, the lowest for a most-active contract since Oct. 19, 2010. Before today, the price fell 15 percent this year, after decreasing 5.7 percent in 2011.

Raw-sugar futures for May delivery slid 0.6 percent to 23.90 cents a pound on ICE, heading for the third consecutive decline.

Cocoa futures for May settlement climbed less than 0.1 percent to $2,285 a metric ton in New York, after falling to $2,260, the lowest price since Feb. 14.

In London futures trading, robusta coffee rose while refined sugar retreated. Cocoa advanced on NYSE Liffe.

Cotton futures dropped for the fifth time in six sessions as supply concerns eased as India, the world’s second-biggest exporter, may review a ban on shipments.

Cotton for May delivery dropped 0.8 percent to 90.7 cents a pound on ICE Futures U.S. in New York. The price has tumbled 59 percent since reaching a record a year ago.

Soft commodities markets: NI SOMKTS

NATURAL GAS

Natural gas futures fell to a six-week low in New York as forecasts for above-average March temperatures signaled reduced demand for the furnace and power-plant fuel.

Natural gas for April delivery declined 4.7 cents, or 2 percent, to $2.309 per million British thermal units on the New York Mercantile Exchange after falling to $2.281, the lowest intraday price since Jan. 23. Gas on Jan. 23 dropped to $2.231, the lowest price since February 2002.

U.K. natural gas and power for the summer gained for the first time in seven days as rising crude oil prices stoked speculation that energy contracts linked to oil will appreciate.

Summer gas climbed as much 0.7 pence to 58.25 pence a therm in London, broker prices show. That’s equal to $9.17 a million British thermal units. A therm is 100,000 Btu. Power for the summer advanced as much as 50 pence to 45.20 pounds a megawatt- hour. Gas is used to generate about half the nation’s electricity.

U.K. natural gas: NI NUKMKT Gas market: NI GASMARKET Americas natural gas: NI AGASMARKET European natural gas: NI EGASMARKET

GRAINS, OILSEEDS

Wheat futures fell to a one-week low on speculation that rains in the next week will improve the condition of winter crops in the U.S. Great Plains as they emerge from dormancy.

Wheat futures for May delivery dropped 1.8 percent to $6.4575 a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade, the lowest since Feb. 27.

Soybeans fell from a five-month high and corn declined on speculation that farmers took advantage of last month’s rally by boosting sales to makers of livestock feed, biofuel and food ingredients.

Soybean futures for May delivery fell 0.2 percent to $13.32 a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade, after reaching $13.39, the highest since Sept. 21.

Corn futures for May delivery fell 1 percent to $6.4725 a bushel in Chicago. On March 5, the price touched $6.6525, the highest since Nov. 9.

Grain markets: NI GRMKTS

European Carbon Permits

European Union carbon allowances advanced as natural gas rebounded and equities rose.

Permits for December gained 1.5 percent to 8.67 euros ($11.39) a metric ton on ICE Futures Europe in London. They’ve surged 18 percent this year. U.K. gas for the six months through September increased 1.5 percent on ICE, the first rise in seven sessions.

EU Carbon Emissions: NI ECBMKT

LIVESTOCK

Hog futures rose for the first time this week on speculation that U.S. shoppers will purchase pork instead of costlier beef. Cattle prices also gained.

Hog futures for April settlement rose 0.5 percent to 87.225 cents a pound on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. Prices dropped 4 percent in the previous two sessions, plunging 3 percent yesterday in the the biggest loss since June 27. Before today, the commodity advanced 2.9 percent this year.

Cattle futures for April delivery gained 0.1 percent to $1.25875 a pound on the CME. Before today, the price rose 3.6 percent this year.

Feeder-cattle futures for April settlement increased 0.2 percent to $1.564 a pound in Chicago.

Livestock markets: NI LVMKTS

To contact the reporter on this story: Claudia Carpenter in London at ccarpenter2@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Claudia Carpenter in London at ccarpenter2@bloomberg.net

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