Oil traded near its highest level in seven weeks in New York on estimates that U.S. supplies declined last week, concern that tensions with Iran will worsen and signs that the Federal Reserve may boost stimulus measures.
Crude for August delivery was at $88.49 a barrel, up 6 cents, in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange at 9:05 a.m. London time. The contract rose 1.5 percent to $88.43 yesterday, the highest close since May 29. Prices have declined 10 percent this year.
Natural gas futures were little changed in New York after dropping yesterday for the first time in four days.
The premium of gasoil, or diesel, to Asian marker Dubai crude rose 10 cents to $16.96 a barrel at 10:22 a.m. Singapore time, according to data from PVM Oil Associates Ltd., a broker. This crack spread, a measure of processing profit, widened for a second day. Gasoil swaps for August climbed $2.25, or 2 percent, to $117.70 a barrel, PVM said.
Naphtha swaps for August rose $17.25, or 2.1 percent, to $853.25 a metric ton, the highest since May 29, according to PVM. Naphtha’s premium to London-traded Brent crude futures, known as the crack spread, gained $17.55 to $73.41 a ton, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
Gold is set to gain in London amid speculation Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke will hint at additional monetary easing when he delivers testimony today. Bullion for immediate delivery rose 0.3 percent to $1,594.30 an ounce by 9:12 a.m. in London.
Copper may gain on speculation that rising infrastructure investment in China will increase demand in the second half from the largest user. The country produced 12 percent more of the metal in June than a year ago.
The metal for delivery in three months climbed as much as 0.7 percent to $7,738 a metric ton, the highest level since July 5, on the London Metal Exchange, before trading little changed at $7,681.75 at 2:12 p.m. Shanghai time. The metal for October- delivery was little changed at 56,210 yuan ($8,817) a ton on the Shanghai Futures Exchange.
GRAINS, OILSEEDS, SOFT COMMODITIES
Corn surged toward a record as further evidence of damage from the worst U.S. drought in a generation stoked concern yields will drop, hurting output in the world’s biggest exporter and lifting global food costs. Soybean futures vaulted above $16 bushel and wheat rallied.
Corn for December delivery climbed as much as 2.1 percent to $7.89 a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade, the highest price for a most-active contract since June 9, 2011, and was at $7.8225 at 2:56 p.m. in Singapore. The most-active contract hit an all-time high of $7.9925 during the food crisis in June 2008.
Soybeans for November delivery rose as much as 1 percent to $16.07 a bushel, the costliest for the most-active contract since July 2008, before trading unchanged at $15.93. Wheat for September delivery rose as much as 1.5 percent to $8.9775 a bushel, the highest since February 2011, and was at $8.9475.
Rubber climbed the most in two weeks on optimism China may take steps to boost its economy amid a global slowdown, increasing demand in the world’s largest user.
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