Orange Juice Advances to Seven-Month High: Commodities at Close

The Standard & Poor’s GSCI Spot Index of 24 raw materials rose 0.5 percent to settle at 640.18 at 3:58 p.m. in New York.

The UBS Bloomberg CMCI index of 26 prices was steady at 1,579.86.

SOFT COMMODITIES

Orange-juice futures climbed to a seven-month high on speculation that damage to citrus groves from dry weather in Florida, the world’s second-largest grower, will be more extensive than the government forecast.

Precipitation in the state will be below normal during the first half of January, Donald Keeney, a senior meteorologist at MDA Information Systems Inc. in Gaithersburg, Maryland, said today in an e-mail. On Dec. 11, the U.S. Department of Agriculture cut its forecast for Florida output by 5.2 percent.

On ICE Futures U.S. in New York, orange juice for March delivery rose 1.1 percent to $1.40 a pound after touching $1.41, the highest for a most-active contract since May 1.

Arabica-coffee futures for March delivery tumbled 1.3 percent to $1.44 a pound. This year, the price is down 37 percent, the most among the 24 raw materials tracked by the Standard & Poor’s GSCI Spot Index.

Raw sugar for March delivery dropped 0.1 percent to 19.39 cents a pound.

Cocoa futures for March delivery retreated 1.2 percent to $2,397 a ton.

Cotton futures for March delivery advanced 0.1 percent to 75.95 cents a pound on ICE.

OIL PRODUCTS

Gasoline and heating oil rose on optimism that the White House is closer to a budget deal with House Speaker John Boehner.

On the New York Mercantile Exchange, gasoline futures for January delivery gained 1.4 percent to $2.6909 a gallon, the highest settlement since Dec. 3.

Heating-oil futures for January delivery advanced 1.4 percent to $2.9965 a gallon, the highest settlement since Dec. 4, extending this year’s increase to 2.1 percent.

CRUDE OIL

Crude oil climbed for a third day in New York on signs an agreement will be reached on the U.S. budget, avoiding automatic spending cuts and tax increases next year.

On the Comex, oil futures for January delivery added 0.8 percent to $87.93 a barrel.

Brent oil for February settlement rose 1 percent to $108.84 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange.

Royal Dutch Shell Plc and Statoil ASA didn’t find a seller for North Sea Forties crude for a second day. Trafigura Beheer BV failed to offload a cargo of Ekofisk blend.

Nigeria, Africa’s largest oil producer, is scheduled to export 65 crude shipments in February, according to a partial loading program that excluded one grade. This is almost equal to the full January export plan.

NATURAL GAS

Natural gas futures advanced for a second day in New York on forecasts for colder-than-normal weather that would boost demand for the heating fuel.

On the Nymex, gas futures for January delivery gained 1.8 percent to $3.418 per million British thermal units.

U.K. gas for same-day delivery rose for the first time in four days as the network manager forecast demand for the heating fuel would be above normal levels.

Gas climbed 0.65 pence, or 1 percent, to 66 pence a therm at 5:20 p.m. London time. Month-ahead gas advanced 0.7 percent to 66.96 pence a therm. That’s equivalent to $10.89 per million Btu.

PRECIOUS METALS

Gold dropped to the lowest in more than three months as signs that U.S. lawmakers may be closer to a budget deal boosted equities and reduced demand for the metal as an alternative asset.

On the Comex in New York, gold futures for February delivery lost 1.6 percent to $1,670.70 an ounce. The metal touched $1,662 earlier, the lowest for a most-active contract since Aug. 31.

Silver futures for March delivery dropped 1.9 percent to $31.669 an ounce after touching $31.40, the lowest since Nov. 7.

On the Nymex, platinum futures for January delivery slid 0.9 percent to $1,593.70 an ounce.

Palladium futures for March delivery decreased 1.1 percent to $690.95 an ounce.

BASE METALS

Copper retreated for a second straight day in New York as rising stockpiles and an impasse in U.S. budget talks signaled weakening demand.

On the Comex, copper futures for March delivery fell 0.3 percent to $3.6535 a pound, after dropping 0.5 percent yesterday. The price is up 6.3 percent this year.

Copper for delivery in three months declined 0.5 percent on the London Metal Exchange to $8,024 a metric ton ($3.64 a pound). Aluminum and zinc also fell in London. Lead, nickel and tin advanced.

GRAINS, OILSEEDS

Soybean futures tumbled the most in five weeks after China, the world’s largest consumer, canceled purchases from the U.S. Corn also declined.

On the Chicago Board of Trade, soybean futures for March delivery slid 1.9 percent to $14.605 a bushel, the biggest drop since Nov. 12.

Corn futures for March delivery declined 0.6 percent to $7.20 a bushel.

Wheat futures for March delivery advanced 0.4 percent to $8.1125 a bushel.

LIVESTOCK

Hog futures climbed for the first time in three sessions on speculation that lower pork prices will encourage U.S. consumers to favor the meat over more costly beef.

On the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, hog futures for February settlement increased 0.6 percent to 85.275 cents a pound.

Cattle futures for February delivery fell 0.4 percent to $1.3295 a pound, after reaching $1.3405, the highest ever for the most-active contract.

Feeder-cattle futures for January settlement declined 1.3 percent to $1.522 a pound on the CME.

To contact the reporter on this story: Thomas Galatola in New York at tgalatola@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Steve Stroth at sstroth@bloomberg.net

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