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Crude Declines; Wheat, Corn Prices Rally: Commodities at Close

The Standard & Poor’s GSCI gauge of 24 commodities rose 0.2 percent to 653.44 at 5:07 p.m. Singapore time. The UBS Bloomberg CMCI index of 26 raw materials gained 0.2 percent to 1,565.089.


Oil dropped a fourth day in New York as investors bet that sanctions against Iran may be delayed while Europe’s debt crisis may slow commodity demand.

Crude for March delivery declined as much as 93 cents to $97.40 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It was at $97.87 at 4:05 p.m. Singapore time. The contract slid $2.21 to $98.33 on Jan. 20. Front-month prices are at the lowest level in almost five weeks and are 11 percent higher the past year.

Brent oil for March settlement was at $109.89 a barrel, up 3 cents, on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange. The


Natural gas fell for the ninth time in 10 days in New York. Gas for February delivery slipped more than 3 percent to $2.274 per million British thermal units in electronic trading on the


Silver advanced to its highest level in more than six weeks as holdings in exchange-traded funds rose for a second day to the most since October. Gold increased to the highest price since Dec. 13.

Cash silver, the best-performing precious metal this year, rallied as much as 1 percent to $32.5075 an ounce, the highest since Dec. 8, and traded at $32.3275 at 2:22 p.m. in Singapore. Cash gold gained as much as 0.4 percent to $1,673.30 an ounce, and traded at $1,672.45. February-delivery bullion rose 0.5 percent to $1,672.50 on the Comex in New York. Spot platinum was


Three-month copper swung between a 0.4 percent gain and a loss of 0.2 percent on the London Metal Exchange before trading little changed at $8,213.25 a metric ton at 4:27 p.m. in Tokyo. The metal rose 2.8 percent last week, the second straight gain. The March-delivery contract on the Comex fell 0.3 percent. Aluminum fell 0.5 percent to $2,206.75 a ton and lead declined 0.2 percent to $2,179 a ton. Zinc was little changed at $2,014 a ton, while nickel gained 0.1 percent to $20,476 a ton. Base metals markets: NI BMMKTS


Wheat and corn advanced for a third day as government data showed shipments climbed from the U.S., the world’s top exporter. Soybeans and soybean meal gained.

Wheat for March delivery rose as much as 1.2 percent to $6.1775 a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade and was at $6.145 at 2:45 p.m. in Singapore. Corn for March increased 1 percent to $6.1725 a bushel, soybeans rose 1 percent to $11.9825 a bushel and meal gained 1.6 percent to $316.80 per 2,000 pounds.

The June-delivery rubber contract fell 2.7 percent to settle at 306 yen a kilogram ($3,973 a metric ton) on the Tokyo Commodity Exchange. The most-active contract climbed to 315.8 yen on Jan. 20, the highest level since Oct. 28, and advanced 13.3 percent last week, the most since the week ended Dec. 19, 2008.

Hog prices dropped to a one-week low on signs of increasing supplies of pork and slowing demand. Cattle futures fell from a record. Hog futures for April settlement declined 0.5 percent to settle at 87.05 cents a pound on Jan. 20 on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange after reaching 87 cents, the lowest for a most-active contract since Jan. 13.

Cattle futures for April delivery fell 0.1 percent to close at $1.27725 a pound, after reaching $1.29325, the highest for a most-active contract since the commodity began trading on the CME in 1964. the biggest monthly gain since September.

Feeder-cattle futures for March settlement dropped 0.1 percent to close at $1.5385 a pound on the CME. Earlier, the price reached a record $1.55275.

On ICE Futures U.S. in New York, orange juice for March delivery climbed by the exchange limit of 10 cents, or 5 percent, to a settle at $2.1065 a pound, the highest ever.

Raw sugar for March delivery rose 1.1 percent to close at 24.89 cents a pound on Jan. 20 on ICE Futures U.S. In London, refined-sugar futures for March delivery rose 0.6 percent to $645.60 a metric ton on NYSE Liffe.

Cocoa futures for March delivery fell 2.6 percent to close at $2,259 a ton on ICE. The price was down 0.4 percent for the

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