Wheat Futures Decline Most in Five Weeks: Commodities at Close
The Standard & Poor’s GSCI Spot Index of 24 raw materials fell 0.1 percent to settle at 677.66 at 3:45 p.m. New York time.
The UBS Bloomberg CMCI gauge of 26 prices declined 0.4 percent to 1,606.22.
Wheat tumbled the most in five weeks on signs of declining demand for exports from the U.S., the world’s biggest shipper.
From June 1 to Feb. 7, 622.5 million bushel were inspected for export, down 10 percent from a year earlier, U.S. Department of Agriculture data showed today. Inspections last week were 22.5 million bushels, behind the weekly pace of 26.7 million needed to meet the USDA’s forecast for shipments of 1.05 billion bushels in the 12 months ending May 31.
On the Chicago Board of Trade, wheat futures for March delivery fell 2 percent to $7.415 a bushel, the biggest decline for a most-active contract since Jan. 2.
Soybean futures for March delivery dropped 1.4 percent to $14.315 a bushel.
Corn futures for March delivery declined 1 percent to $7.0225 a bushel.
Gold dropped to the lowest in a month on speculation that physical demand will slow during this week’s Lunar New Year holiday in Asia.
On the Comex in New York, gold futures for April delivery fell 1.1 percent to $1,649.10 an ounce. Earlier, the price touched $1,644.10, the lowest since Jan. 7.
Silver futures for March delivery slumped 1.7 percent to $30.91 an ounce, the biggest drop in a week.
On the New York Mercantile Exchange, platinum futures for April delivery fell 1.1 percent to $1,696.10 an ounce, the third straight loss.
Palladium futures for March delivery rose 0.9 percent to $758.60 an ounce.
Copper fell the most in four weeks on speculation that demand will ebb during the Lunar New Year holiday in China, the biggest buyer of industrial metal, while Europe’s debt woes mounted.
On the Comex, copper futures for March delivery declined 1 percent to $3.7225 a pound, the biggest drop since Jan. 11.
On the London Metal Exchange, copper for delivery in three months slid 1.1 percent to $8,199 a metric ton ($3.72 a pound). Aluminum, nickel, zinc and lead also fell. Tin was unchanged.
Sugar rose the most in a week on signs that processors in Brazil, the biggest producer, will make more ethanol instead of refined sweetener from cane.
On ICE Futures U.S. in New York, raw sugar for Mach delivery increased 1.7 percent to 18.44 cents a pound, the biggest gain since Jan. 30.
Cocoa futures for May delivery declined 2.5 percent to $2,172 a ton, the largest drop since Jan. 22.
Arabica-coffee futures for March delivery fell 0.6 percent to $1.4015 a pound.
Cotton futures for March delivery rose 0.3 percent to 82.92 cents a pound.
Orange-juice futures for March delivery climbed 0.7 percent to $1.214 a pound.
Gasoline fell after a winter snowstorm blanketed the U.S. Northeast, reducing demand for the motor fuel.
On the Nymex, gasoline futures for March delivery dropped 1.2 percent to $3.0212 a gallon.
Heating-oil futures for March delivery slid 0.2 percent to $3.2315 a gallon.
Natural gas climbed for the first time in three sessions as forecasters predicted colder-than-normal weather next week that would stoke demand for the heating fuel.
On the Nymex, gas futures for March delivery rose 0.2 percent to $3.279 per million British thermal units.
U.K. gas fell as supplies rose to meet increased demand after snow swept much of England.
The next-day price dropped 1.5 percent to 66.9 pence a therm at 4:14 p.m. London time, broker data show. Month-ahead gas slid as much as 1.4 percent to 65 pence a therm, the lowest since Jan. 3. That’s equivalent to $10.18 per million Btu.
Crude oil advanced for the first time in four sessions as the euro strengthened against the dollar.
On the Nymex, oil futures for March delivery rose 1.4 percent to $97.03 a barrel, the highest settlement since Feb. 1.
Brent oil for March settlement slid 0.6 percent to $118.13 a barrel on the ICE Futures Europe exchange.
Mercuria Energy Trading SA and Total SA bid unsuccessfully for North Sea Forties crude. Petroineos offered to sell Russian Urals grade without finding a buyer.
The Caspian Pipeline Consortium, which runs the only oil export link in Russia with foreign shareholders, will reduce daily exports from the Black Sea in March by 3.2 percent from this month, according to a loading program obtained by Bloomberg News.
Hogs rose on signs of higher demand for U.S. pork.
On the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, hog futures for April settlement increased 0.3 percent to 86.375 cents a pound.
Cattle futures for April delivery rose 0.2 percent to $1.3035 a pound. Earlier, the price touched $1.2895, the lowest since Nov. 15.
Feeder-cattle futures for March settlement fell 0.1 percent to $1.448 a pound, the seventh straight decline.
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