Gas Tumbles Most in 15 Weeks as Zinc Gains: Commodities at Close

Standard & Poor’s GSCI gauge of 24 commodities fell 0.5 percent to 646.50 by 4:39 p.m. in London. The UBS Bloomberg CMCI index of 26 raw materials was down 0.2 percent at 1,577.6073.

NATURAL GAS

Natural gas tumbled the most in 15 weeks as revised forecasts showing an unusually warm start to December signaled reduced demand for heating fuels.

Futures for December delivery fell 14.6 cents, or 3.7 percent, to $3.755 per million British thermal units on the New York Mercantile Exchange after dropping 18.1 cents to $3.72 in the biggest intraday percentage decline since Aug. 10. Prices are up 6 percent from a year ago.

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

SOFT COMMODITIES

Cotton futures gained the most in a week on signs of rising demand for supplies from the U.S., the world’s largest exporter. Orange juice climbed, while cocoa and coffee fell.

Cotton for March delivery climbed 0.9 percent to 72.1 cents a pound on ICE Futures U.S. in New York. A close at that price would mark the biggest advance for a most-active contract since Nov. 15.

Orange-juice futures for January delivery jumped 1.6 percent to $1.28 a pound.

Cocoa futures for March delivery dropped 2.3 percent to $2,457 a metric ton, snapping a four-session rally.

Arabica-coffee futures for March delivery fell 0.6 percent to $1.4985 a pound.

Soft commodities markets: NI SOMKTS

LIVESTOCK

Hog futures rose, heading for the biggest gain in a week, on signs that U.S. meatpackers are increasing purchases of animals for slaughter.

Hog futures for February settlement rose 0.6 percent to 87.875 cents a pound on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. A close at that level would be the biggest gain for the most-active contract since Nov. 19.

Cattle futures for February delivery fell 0.2 percent to $1.32425 a pound on the CME. The commodity reached $1.32925 on Nov. 23, a record for the most-active contract.

Feeder-cattle futures for January settlement dropped 0.3 percent to $1.475 a pound in Chicago.

Livestock markets: NI LVMKTS

GRAINS, OILSEEDS

Soybean futures climbed to a two-week high as planting was delayed in South America. Grains advanced as U.S. winter-wheat conditions were the worst in at least 27 years.

Soybean futures for January delivery rose 0.5 percent to $14.2575 a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade. Earlier, the oilseed reached $14.355, the highest for a most-active contract since Nov. 12. Last year, the U.S. was the world’s biggest exporter, followed by Brazil and Argentina.

Wheat futures for March delivery gained 0.4 percent to $8.6525 a bushel in Chicago. Earlier, the price reached $8.69, the highest since Nov. 15.

Corn futures for March delivery climbed 0.5 percent to $7.535 a bushel. Earlier, the grain reached $7.57, the highest since Nov. 9.

Grain markets: NI GRMKTS

BASE METALS

Copper was little changed in New York, erasing earlier gains.

Copper for delivery in March was little changed at $3.5375 a pound on the Comex in New York. Copper for delivery in three months was little changed at $7,773.25 a metric ton on the London Metal Exchange.

Zinc for delivery in three months climbed 1.3 percent to $1,987 a ton on the LME. The metal reached $1,994, the highest level since Oct. 11.

Aluminum and nickel rose in London. Tin and lead fell.

Base metals markets: NI BMMKTS

PRECIOUS METALS

Gold futures fell, heading for the first decline in three sessions, as a rebound in the dollar eroded the appeal of the precious metal as an alternative asset.

Gold futures for December delivery slid 0.2 percent to $1,747.30 an ounce on the Comex in New York. Prices gained 2.1 percent last week.

Silver futures for March delivery fell 0.4 percent to $34.06 an ounce in New York, after reaching $34.315, the highest since Oct. 11.

Precious metal markets: NI PCMKTS

CRUDE OIL

Oil dropped as euro-area finance ministers met to negotiate a bailout payment for Greece and as American leaders prepared to wrestle with a budget agreement.

Crude oil for January delivery declined 92 cents, or 1 percent, to $87.36 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Prices are down 12 percent this year.

Brent oil for January settlement fell 91 cents, or 0.8 percent, to $110.47 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange.

Oil markets: NI OILMARKET

OIL PRODUCTS

Heating oil and gasoline declined as refinery starts in the U.S. signaled that production rates will increase and supplies will climb.

December-delivery heating oil slid 3.5 cents, or 1.1 percent, to $3.0421 a gallon on the New York Mercantile Exchange, the first decline in three days.

Gasoline for December delivery fell 2.14 cents, or 0.8 percent, to $2.7225 a gallon on the exchange.

The average nationwide cost for regular gasoline fell 0.3 cent to $3.423 a gallon, AAA said today on its website. The pump price reached a 2012 high of $3.936 on April 4.

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

European Carbon Permits

European Union carbon permits for December fell 3 percent to 6.80 euros a ton on the ICE Futures Europe exchange.

EU Carbon Emissions: NI ECBMKT

To contact the reporter on this story: Maria Kolesnikova in London at mkolesnikova@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: John Deane at jdeane3@bloomberg.net

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