Silver Leads Decline as Natural Gas Climbs: Commodities at CloseClaudia Carpenter
The Standard & Poor’s GSCI gauge of 24 commodities dropped 0.1 percent to 675.22 at 5:13 p.m. in London. The UBS Bloomberg CMCI index of 26 raw materials was down 0.2 percent to 1,616.096.
Gold fell the most in a week as a jump in Americans’ incomes and an unexpected drop in German unemployment signaled an improving economic outlook, curbing demand for the precious metal as a haven asset. Silver dropped 3 percent.
Gold futures for April delivery dropped 0.9 percent to $1,666.60 an ounce on the Comex in New York. A close at that level would be the biggest loss since Jan. 24. Prices have fallen 0.5 percent this month, heading for a fourth straight decline.
Precious metal markets: NI PCMKTS
Natural gas futures climbed 1.1 percent to $3.373 per million British thermal units.
Oil Products Europe: NI OPEMKT Gasoline: NI GASOLINE Heating oil: NI HEATOIL
Cotton fell for the first time this week as exports declined from the U.S., the world’s top shipper. Coffee and sugar also slid, while cocoa and orange juice rose.
Cotton for March delivery slid 0.5 percent to 82.53 cents a pound at 10:26 a.m. on ICE Futures U.S. in New York. The price climbed 3 percent in the previous three sessions.
In the week ended Jan. 22, hedge funds boosted bullish bets by 67 percent to the highest since February 2011, government data showed.
Arabica-coffee futures for March delivery dropped 0.4 percent to $1.4715 a pound on ICE.
Raw-sugar futures for March delivery fell 0.5 percent to 18.61 cents a pound.
Cocoa futures for March delivery rose 0.9 percent to $2,198 a metric ton.
Orange-juice futures for March delivery climbed 1.7 percent to $1.2135 a pound. Earlier, the commodity reached $1.227, the highest for a most-active contract since Dec. 31.
Soft commodities markets: NI SOMKTS
U.K. natural gas: NI NUKMKT Gas market: NI GASMARKET Americas natural gas: NI AGASMARKET European natural gas: NI EGASMARKET
European Carbon Permits
European Union emission permits dropped 10 percent to 3.41 euros a metric ton.
EU Carbon Emissions: NI ECBMKT
Hog prices rose on speculation that demand for pork may increase as consumers buy more of the cheaper meat. Cattle also advanced.
Hog futures for April settlement rose 0.8 percent to 89.95 cents a pound at 10:24 a.m. on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. Through yesterday, the commodity climbed 4.1 percent this month.
Cattle futures for April delivery increased 0.3 percent to $1.333 a pound in Chicago.
Feeder-cattle futures for March settlement added 0.6 percent to $1.49925 a pound on the CME.
Livestock markets: NI LVMKTS
Soybeans and corn fell from six-week highs after rain overnight in Argentina eased concern that dry weather was dimming prospects for bigger harvests in South America.
Soybean futures for March delivery dropped 1.1 percent to $14.6225 a bushel at 10:52 a.m. on the Chicago Board of Trade. Prices earlier touched $14.8425, the highest since Dec. 18. Through yesterday, the oilseed was up 4.9 percent in January, heading for the first monthly increase since August.
Corn futures for March delivery slipped 0.3 percent to $7.3775 a bushel in Chicago, after touching $7.445, the highest since Dec. 7. The grain climbed 6 percent in January as of yesterday, on pace for the first advance since July.
Wheat fell 0.7 percent to $7.8175 a bushel.
Grain markets: NI GRMKTS
Oil fell for the first time in four days as claims for U.S. unemployment benefits increased more than forecast and an index of consumer comfort dropped.
West Texas Intermediate for March delivery slid 87 cents, or 0.9 percent, to $97.07 a barrel at 11:17 a.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Trading was 12 percent above the 100-day average for the time of day. Futures rose to $97.94 yesterday, the highest close since Sept. 14. Prices are up 5.7 percent in January and poised for a third monthly increase.
Brent for March settlement rose 20 cents, or 0.2 percent, to $115.10 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange. Trading was 0.2 percent above the 100-day average. Brent’s premium over WTI widened to $18.03 from yesterday’s $16.96.
Oil markets: NI OILMARKET
Copper fell 0.7 percent to $3.723 a pound on Comex in New York.
Base metals markets: NI BMMKTS