WTI Crude Drops as Supply at 9-Month High: Commodities at Close
West Texas Intermediate oil fluctuated after a government report showed that U.S. crude inventories surged to a nine-month high as fuel supplies dropped more than analysts forecast.
Crude oil for May delivery decreased 1 cent to $96.33 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The volume of all futures traded was 15 percent below the 100-day average.
Brent oil for May settlement rose 30 cents, or 0.3 percent, to $109.66 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange. The volume of all futures traded was 24 percent above the 100-day average. The European benchmark was at a $13.33 premium to WTI after ending yesterday at $13.02, the narrowest settlement spread since July.
Oil markets: NI OILMARKET
Orange juice dropped the most in a week after rain in the citrus belt of Florida, the world’s second-largest grower, eased the stress of recent dry weather. Cotton was little changed and coffee fell, while sugar and cocoa gained.
Orange juice for delivery in May slumped 1.4 percent to $1.37 a pound on ICE Futures U.S. in New York and earlier fell as much as 1.7 percent to $1.3655 a pound. Prices through yesterday were up 18 percent this year.
Also in New York, cotton futures for May delivery were little changed at 81.10 cents a pound. Arabica-coffee futures for delivery in May slipped 0.5 percent to $1.3695 a pound on ICE, the first loss in six sessions.
Cocoa futures for May delivery closed up 0.2 percent at $2,149 a metric ton, while raw-sugar futures for May delivery advanced 0.6 percent to 17.89 cents a pound.
Soft commodities markets: NI SOMKTS
Tin and lead fell in London, leading declines by industrial metals, as a bailout for Cyprus and political deadlock in Italy stoked concern that the euro-area debt crisis threatens to curb demand.
Tin for delivery in three months dropped 0.6 percent to $23,000 a metric ton at on the LME. Lead fell as much as 1.7 percent to $2,095 a ton, the lowest since Nov. 5. Copper slid 0.1 percent to $7,615 a ton in London.
On the Comex in New York, copper futures for delivery in May were unchanged at $3.443 a pound.
Base metals markets: NI BMMKTS
Hog futures fell, halting the longest rally in nine months, on speculation that U.S. meatpacker purchases are slowing before the holiday weekend. Cattle rose.
Hog futures for June settlement declined 0.9 percent to 90.275 cents a pound on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. The price rose in the previous five sessions, the longest rally since June.
Cattle futures for June delivery climbed 1 percent to $1.224 a pound in Chicago.
Feeder-cattle futures for May settlement advanced 1 percent to $1.419 a pound on the CME.
Livestock markets: NI LVMKTS
Wheat alternated between gains and losses in Chicago, heading for a quarterly decline, before a U.S. government report tomorrow that may show stocks of the grain fell less than those of corn and soybeans.
Wheat for delivery in May rose 0.9 percent to $7.3825 a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade after adding as much as 1 percent and retreating as much as 0.5 percent. Milling wheat for delivery in May traded on NYSE Liffe in Paris rose 0.5 percent to 246.25 euros ($314) a metric ton.
Corn for delivery in May rose 0.4 percent to $7.3325 a bushel in Chicago. The grain is up 5 percent this quarter. Soybeans for delivery in the same month, set for a 2.8 percent quarterly gain, added less than 0.1 percent to $14.485 a bushel.
Grains markets: NI GRMKTS
Gold futures fell for the third straight session after the Cyprus bailout curbed demand for the metal as a haven.
Gold futures for June delivery dropped 0.4 percent to $1,600.50 an ounce at 10:50 a.m. on the Comex in New York. Volume was double the average in the past 100 days for this time. The metal headed for the second straight quarterly loss, the longest slump since 2001.
Silver futures for May delivery dropped 0.4 percent to $28.705 an ounce on the Comex.
Precious metal markets: NI PCMKTS
Heating oil futures rose as inventories of distillates slid last week the most since November 2011 and demand increased. Crack spreads widened.
Heating oil for April delivery rose 1.81 cents, or 0.6 percent, to $2.8994 a gallon on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
Heating oil crack spreads widened as crude supplies rose to the highest level in nine months. May heating oil traded at a $30.75-a-barrel premium to West Texas Intermediate crude, up from $29.61 yesterday. The spread over Brent crude on ICE Futures Europe increased 89 cents to $17.48 a barrel. below a year ago.
Gasoline for April delivery declined 0.76 cent to $3.103 a gallon. Trading volume was 6.4 percent below the 100-day average for the time of day. Gasoline has gained 6.5 percent in March and 10 percent since December. The more actively traded May contract slipped 0.77 cent to $3.0948. barrel. The spread versus Brent narrowed 21 cents to $20.74.
Gasoline at the pump, averaged nationwide, fell 0.8 cent to $3.65 a gallon, AAA said today on its website. Prices have dropped for the past seven days and are 24.8 cents below a year ago.
Oil Products Europe: NI OPEMKT Gasoline: NI GASOLINE Heating oil: NI HEATOIL
Natural gas futures advanced to an 18-month high in New York on forecasts of colder-than-normal April weather that would increase heating-fuel demand, widening a year-on-year inventory deficit. where we started.’’
Natural gas for May delivery rose 5.8 cents, or 1.5 percent, to $4.049 per million British thermal units on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
U.K. natural gas: NI NUKMKT Gas market: NI GASMARKET Americas natural gas: NI AGASMARKET European natural gas: NI EGASMARKET
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