Natural Gas Rises on Cold Weather Forecast: Commodities at Close

The Standard & Poor’s GSCI Spot Index of 24 raw materials rose 0.4 percent to settle at 660.83x at 4 p.m. in New York, led by natural gas.

The UBS Bloomberg CMCI index of 26 prices advanced 0.4 percent to 1,592.66.

NATURAL GAS

Natural gas rose to a six-week high in New York, capping a second straight weekly gain, as forecasts for frigid weather signaled increased heating-fuel demand.

Forecasters including MDA Weather Services in Bethesda, Maryland, predicted below-normal temperatures from the Midwest to the Northeast over the next 10 days.

On the New York Mercantile Exchange, gas futures for February delivery climbed 2.1 percent to $3.566 per million British thermal units, the highest settlement price since Dec. 6.

U.K. gas fell, snapping a three-day gain, as increased demand was met with the highest flows in almost a year.

Gas dropped 2.9 pence to 69.5 pence a therm at 4:45 p.m. London time, after reaching 74 pence yesterday, the most since February. Next-month gas dropped 1.2 percent to 67.15 pence a therm. That’s equivalent to $10.66 per million Btu.

BASE METALS

Copper rose in New York to the highest in a week after economic growth sped up for the first time in two years in China, the world’s largest user.

On the Comex in New York, copper futures for delivery in March added 0.5 percent to $3.679 a pound, after touching $3.6975, the highest since Jan. 11. The metal climbed 0.7 percent this week.

PRECIOUS METALS

Silver futures rose to the highest in a month after the U.S. Mint said it sold out of 2013 American Eagle coins and purchases by the biggest exchange-traded fund for the metal reached the highest in five years.

On the Comex, silver futures for March delivery gained 0.4 percent to $31.932 an ounce, after touching $32.14, the highest since Dec. 18. The metal climbed 5 percent this week, the most since Nov. 23.

Gold futures for February delivery declined 0.2 percent to $1,687 an ounce on the Comex.

On the Nymex, platinum futures for April delivery slipped 1.6 percent to settle at $1,674 an ounce, the biggest drop since Dec. 20.

Palladium futures for March delivery fell 0.5 percent to $722.75 an ounce.

SOFT COMMODITIES

Cotton futures climbed to the highest closing price since May on signs of robust demand for supplies from the U.S., the world’s biggest exporter.

On ICE Futures U.S. in New York, cotton for March delivery climbed 1 percent to 78.55 cents a pound, the highest settlement since May 15.

Arabica-coffee futures for March delivery gained 0.5 percent to $1.563 a pound, after touching $1.579, the highest since Nov. 13.

Orange-juice futures for March delivery jumped 2 percent to $1.1455 a pound.

Raw-sugar futures for March delivery slid 0.3 percent to 18.37 cents a pound.

Cocoa futures for March delivery fell 0.7 percent to $2,285 a metric ton.

CRUDE OIL

Crude oil capped the longest weekly winning streak in 14 months in New York as House Republicans planned a vote next week on a three-month extension of the U.S. borrowing authority.

On the Nymex, oil futures for February delivery added 0.1 percent to $95.56 a barrel. Prices rose 2.1 percent in the week, the sixth-straight gain and the longest winning streak since November 2011

The Brent pipeline system is pumping oil from all North Sea platforms except Cormorant Alpha, the operating company said. There were no bids or offers for North Sea or Russian Urals crudes.

Nigeria left its official selling price for benchmark Bonny Light and Qua Iboe crudes unchanged for February at the highest level in nine months, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corp. said in an e-mailed statement.

OIL PRODUCTS

Heating oil gained on forecasts for colder-than-normal weather in the U.S. Northeast next week at a time when supplies of the fuel are declining.

On the Nymex, heating-oil futures for February delivery rose 1 percent to $3.0525 a gallon.

Gasoline futures for February delivery added 1 percent to $2.7968 a gallon.

GRAINS, OILSEEDS

Soybeans fell for a second day on speculation that rain will improve the yield potential of crops in Brazil, reducing demand for supplies from the U.S., the world’s biggest grower and exporter.

On the Chicago Board of Trade, soybean futures for March delivery dropped 0.1 percent to $14.2925 a bushel.

Corn futures for March delivery rose 0.4 percent to $7.275 a bushel, the ninth gain in 10 sessions.

Wheat futures for delivery in March advanced 1.3 percent to $7.9125 a bushel.

LIVESTOCK

Cattle dropped for the fourth straight day, capping the longest losing streak since July, on speculation that animal demand is going to fall after Cargill Inc. said it will idle a beef plant.

On the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, cattle futures for April delivery fell 0.8 percent to $1.29825 a pound.

Feeder-cattle futures for March settlement rose 0.3 percent to $1.4635 a pound, the first gain since Jan. 4.

Hog futures for April settlement closed unchanged at 88.075 cents a pound.

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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