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Oil Trades Near Two-Week Low; Copper Drops: Commodities at Close

The Standard & Poor’s GSCI gauge of 24 commodities climbed 0.1 percent to 639.33 as of 5:06 p.m. in Singapore. The UBS Bloomberg CMCI index of 26 raw materials dropped 0.1 percent to 1,508.125.


Oil traded near a two-week low in New York as the risk of a debt downgrade in Europe countered forecasts that crude stockpiles dropped in the U.S.

Crude for January delivery was at $97.78 a barrel, up 1 cent, in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange at 3:41 p.m. Singapore time. Yesterday, the contract slid $1.64 to $97.77, the lowest settlement since Nov. 25. Prices are 7 percent higher this year after rising 15 percent in 2010.

Brent oil for January settlement on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange was unchanged at $107.26 a barrel. The


Natural gas futures slid in New York. Gas for January


High-sulfur fuel oil swaps for January climbed $1.50, or 0.2 percent, to $638.75 a metric ton at 12 p.m. Singapore time, according to PVM Oil Associates Ltd., a broker. Prices lost 3.5 percent over the previous two days.

Fuel oil’s discount to Asian marker Dubai crude narrowed 47 cents to $5.80 a barrel, based on PVM data. The gap yesterday was the widest since September, indicating losses for refiners turning oil into residual products.

The premium of gasoil, or diesel, to Dubai crude rose 37 cents to $17.98 a barrel, according to PVM. This crack spread, a measure of processing profit, yesterday was the narrowest in seven days. Naphtha’s premium to London-traded Brent crude


The three-month copper contract on the London Metal Exchange fell as much as 0.5 percent to $7,567.25 a metric ton and traded at $7,579 at 4:41 p.m. Tokyo time. The metal dropped as much as 3.2 percent yesterday, the biggest decline in three weeks. The March-delivery contract slumped 0.6 percent to $3.4435 per pound on the Comex in New York.

Aluminum rose 0.8 percent at $2,032 per ton in London and zinc gained 0.9 percent at $1,950.5 per ton. Nickel dropped 1.4


Soybeans for delivery in January fell 0.2 percent to $11.095 a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade at 4:04 p.m. Singapore time, erasing an earlier gain of 0.5 percent. Corn for March delivery dropped 0.2 percent to $5.9275 a bushel, after rising as much as 0.4 percent. Wheat for March delivery was little changed at $5.9375 a bushel after rising as much as 0.5 percent.

Cattle futures for February delivery rose 0.2 percent to settle at $1.1865 a pound yesterday on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. The commodity has gained 9.5 percent in 2011. Feeder-


Immediate-delivery gold lost as much as 0.9 percent to $1,650.93 an ounce, the lowest level since Oct. 25, and traded at $1,655.40 at 1:43 p.m. in Singapore. February-delivery bullion declined 0.6 percent to $1,658.40 on the Comex.

Spot silver dropped as much as 1.3 percent to $30.91 an ounce, the lowest level since Nov. 21. Cash palladium declined


Cotton futures for March delivery dropped 3.6 percent to settle at 87.16 cents a pound on ICE Futures U.S. in New York yesterday, the fourth straight decline. The fiber has plunged 40 percent this year. Orange-juice futures for January delivery slid 2.2 percent to $1.6625 a pound on ICE, after touching $1.635, the lowest level since Oct. 18.

Cocoa for March delivery surged 5.5 percent to settle at $2,181 a ton, the biggest gain since October 2009. The price climbed as high as $2,246. Arabica-coffee futures for March delivery lost 2.9 percent to $2.2105 a pound in New York, the

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