WTI Crude Oil Falls; Copper, Rubber Climb: Commodities at Close
West Texas Intermediate fell after its biggest advance in two weeks, with prices failing to breach a technical indicator amid a decline in U.S. stockpiles.
WTI for May delivery fell as much as 43 cents to $93.07 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It was at $93.13 at 3:42 p.m. Singapore time. The volume of all futures traded was 58 percent below the 100-day average. The April contract, which expired yesterday, closed 80 cents higher at $92.96.
Brent for May settlement on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange slid 15 cents to $108.57 a barrel. The volume of all futures traded was 78 percent below the 100-day average. The European benchmark grade was at a premium of $15.44 to WTI. The gap was $14.93 on March 19, the narrowest since July.
OIL PRODUCTS Asia naphtha’s discount to Brent crude narrowed from the widest level in at least three months. The gasoil margin gained for the first time in four days.
• Light Distillates • Singapore naphtha’s discount to London Brent crude narrows 3 cents to $10.06/bbl as of 11:14 a.m. Singapore time, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The spread was $10.10 yesterday, the widest since at least Dec. 7, when Bloomberg began compiling the data. • April Japan naphtha swaps down $4.20 to $899.09/mt • April East-West naphtha spread is at $10.08/mt
• Middle Distillates • Singapore 0.05% sulfur gasoil’s premium to Dubai crude rises 82 cents to $16.62/bbl • April gasoil swap down 88 cents to $121.88/bbl • April gasoil swap trades 6 cents/bbl above May contract • April East-West gasoil spread is at 75 cents/mt • Jet fuel regrade at minus 45 cents/bbl • April kerosene swap trades 6 cents/bbl above May contract
• Fuel Oil • Singapore fuel oil’s discount to Dubai crude narrows 3 cents to $5.85/bbl • April 180-fuel oil swap up 14 cents to $631.16/mt • April fuel oil swap trades 90 cents/mt above May contract • April viscosity spread is at $7.24/mt • April East-West fuel oil spread narrows 27 cents to $30.08/mt
Copper advanced for a second day after a survey from HSBC Holdings Plc and Markit Economics showed China’s manufacturing expanding at faster pace this month. Aluminum, zinc and lead also advanced.
Copper for delivery in three months rose as much as 1.7 percent to $7,750 a metric ton on the London Metal Exchange and traded at $7,666 by 4:30 p.m. in Tokyo. The May contract on the Comex in New York climbed 0.6 percent to $3.467 per pound.
Gold fluctuated near the highest level in more than three weeks as signs that the rally was damping physical demand were countered by investors weighing the outlook for further stimulus and Europe’s debt crisis.
Gold for immediate delivery was little changed at $1,608.01 an ounce at 3:21 p.m. in Singapore. The metal rose to $1,615.76 on March 19, the costliest since Feb. 26, as a levy on bank deposits in Cyprus boosted haven demand. Futures for April were little changed at $1,607.10 on the Comex after falling yesterday as the Federal Reserve cut its U.S. unemployment forecast.
Cash silver advanced 0.3 percent to $28.91 an ounce. Spot platinum was little changed at $1,581.25 an ounce. Palladium increased 0.2 percent to $760.90 an ounce.
GRAINS, OILSEEDS, SOFT COMMODITIES
Rubber advanced the most in two months on optimism that economic stimulus in the U.S. would improve demand and as Thailand mulled extending export cuts.
The contract for delivery in August rose 3.2 percent, the biggest gain at close since Jan. 18, to 282 yen a kilogram ($2,944 a metric ton) on the Tokyo Commodity Exchange, paring this year’s loss to 6.8 percent.
Soybeans climbed for a second day to the highest level in almost a week on speculation that demand for U.S supplies will increase because of shipping delays in Brazil, set to be the biggest exporter this year.
The contract for delivery in May gained as much as 0.9 percent to $14.33 a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade, the highest most-active price since March 15. Futures were at $14.31 by 1:26 p.m. Singapore time, up 5.9 percent from an almost seven-month low on Jan. 11.
Corn for May delivery was little changed at $7.3225 a bushel. Wheat for delivery in the same month was also little changed at $7.3575 a bushel.
Palm oil climbed to the highest level in almost a month on speculation that an increase in exports from Malaysia and a decline in output will reduce inventories in the world’s largest producer after Indonesia.
The contract for delivery in June advanced as much as 1.4 percent to 2,477 ringgit ($794) a metric ton on the Malaysia Derivatives Exchange, the highest price for the most-active contract since Feb. 25, before trading at 2,458 ringgit at 3:39 p.m. in Kuala Lumpur.
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