Natural Gas Climbs as Supply Concerns Ease: Commodities at Close

The Standard & Poor’s GSCI Spot Index of 24 raw materials rose 0.9 percent to 663.96 in New York, the second straight increase. Natural gas led the advances while silver and cotton declined.

The UBS Bloomberg CMCI gauge of 26 prices rose 0.8 percent to 1,627.519, the first gain in five days.

NATURAL GAS

Natural gas futures gained for a second day in New York on speculation that stockpiles won’t reach capacity before winter weather boosts heating demand.

U.S. inventories rose by 67 billion cubic feet last week to 3.496 trillion, below the five-year average increase for the week of 73 billion, an Energy Department report showed yesterday. U.S. peak working gas storage capacity was 4.239 trillion cubic feet as of April.

Natural gas for October delivery rose 8.8 cents, or 3.1 percent, to settle at $2.885 per million British thermal units on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The futures declined 2 percent this week and 3.5 percent this year.

SOFT COMMODITIES

Sugar rose for a second day on speculation that output in Brazil, the world’s biggest producer, may be smaller than expected after excess rains cut crop quality. Coffee gained the most since July and cotton climbed the most since early June.

Raw sugar for March delivery climbed 0.8 percent to close at 20.07 cents a pound on ICE Futures U.S. in New York, paring this week’s decline to 3.4 percent. Prices are down 23 percent in the past year, partly on concern that global output will exceed demand for a third straight year.

Arabica-coffee futures for December delivery rose 2.8 percent to $1.733 a pound in New York. For the week, prices dropped 4.3 percent, the most since July.

Cotton futures for December delivery fell 2.6 percent to 73.25 cents a pound on ICE, the biggest slump in six weeks. Prices dropped 3.5 percent for the week.

GRAINS, OILSEEDS

Wheat rose for the second time in three days as unusually heavy rain threatens crops in Argentina while dry weather erodes production prospects in Australia.

Corn futures gained on signs that use of the grain in fuel and livestock feed is climbing in the U.S., the world’s top consumer, following a September price slump. Soybeans rose from a five-week low on export demand.

Wheat futures for December delivery climbed 2 percent to settle at $8.9725 a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade. The price slumped 2.9 percent this week, partly on speculation that global demand will decline.

CBOT corn futures for December delivery climbed 0.3 percent to close at $7.4825. This week, the price fell 4.3 percent, the fourth straight drop.

Soybean futures for November delivery rose 0.2 percent to $16.2175 a bushel. Earlier, the price touched $16.075, the lowest for a most-active contract since Aug. 15. The oilseed fell 6.7 percent this week, the most since early June.

CRUDE OIL

Oil advanced as optimism that central bank stimulus will revive the global economy pared crude’s biggest weekly decline in more than three months.

The Federal Reserve last week announced a third round of quantitative easing to bolster the U.S. economy, and central banks in Europe and Japan have pledged steps to spur growth.

Nymex crude oil for November delivery increased 47 cents, or 0.5 percent, to settle at $92.89 a barrel, the first gain in five days. The October contract expired at $91.87 yesterday. The front-month price is down 6.2 percent this week, the biggest drop since June 1.

Brent oil for November settlement climbed $1.39, or 1.3 percent, to end the session at $111.42 a barrel on the London- based ICE Futures Europe exchange.

OIL PRODUCTS

Gasoline rose, narrowing its losses for the week, on speculation that stimulus from central banks will improve economic growth and boost demand for fuel.

Nymex gasoline for October delivery rose 3.85 cents, or 1.3 percent, to settle at $2.9425 a gallon. Prices fell 2.4 percent this week.

October-delivery heating oil rose 2.32 cents, or 0.8 percent, to settle at $3.1207 a gallon on the exchange, trimming the loss for the week to 3.7 percent.

PRECIOUS METALS

Gold futures rose for the fifth straight week, capping the longest rally since February, as monetary stimulus by central banks boosted demand for the metal as a store of value.

Gold futures for December delivery increased 0.4 percent to settle at $1,778 an ounce on the Comex in New York. Prices rose 0.3 percent this week, the fifth straight gain and the longest rally since early February.

Silver futures for December delivery fell 0.1 percent to $34.638 an ounce in New York.

Nymex platinum futures for October delivery added 0.8 percent to $1,637.60 an ounce. Palladium futures for December delivery gained 1.6 percent to $671.55 an ounce.

BASE METALS

Copper futures rose the most in a week on speculation that European officials will unveil a bailout plan for Spain as soon as next week, easing concerns that metal demand will ebb.

Copper futures for December delivery advanced 0.8 percent to close at $3.789 a pound on the Comex in New York, the biggest gain for a most-active contract since Sept. 14. The metal, down 1.1 percent this week, has climbed 10 percent in 2012.

On the London Metal Exchange, copper for delivery in three months climbed 0.1 percent to $8,281.50 a metric ton ($3.76 a pound).

Zinc, lead, tin, aluminum and nickel also gained.

LIVESTOCK

Hog futures rose, capping the second straight weekly gain, on speculation that U.S. pork demand is increasing after prices slumped to the lowest since 2010. Cattle also increased.

Hog futures for December settlement increased 1 percent to settle at 74.975 cents a pound on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. The price rose 1.5 percent this week. On Sept. 19, the price fell to 75.54 cents, the 22-month low.

Cattle futures for December delivery advanced 0.3 percent to $1.28475 a pound. The price has climbed 5.8 percent this year.

Feeder-cattle futures for October settlement gained 0.3 percent to $1.47225 a pound.

To contact the reporter on this story: Naureen S. Malik in New York at nmalik28@bloomberg.net;

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Dan Stets at dstets@bloomberg.net

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