Copper Paces Metal Rally on China Outlook: Commodities at Close

The Standard & Poor’s GSCI Spot Index of 24 raw materials rose 0.8 percent to settle at 637.09 at 3:41 p.m. in New York, led by industrial metals.

The UBS Bloomberg CMCI gauge of 26 prices advanced 0.9 percent to 1,518.06.

BASE METALS

Copper rose the most since January after slower-than-estimated inflation eased concerns that the government will tighten monetary policy in China, the world’s top user of industrial metals.

Consumer prices increased 2.1 percent in March from a year earlier in China. Analysts forecast a 2.5 percent gain. Metal prices climbed after first-quarter profit at Alcoa Inc., the largest U.S. aluminum producer, topped estimates. Copper miners at Chile’s state-owned Codelco staged a one-day strike.

On the London Metal Exchange, copper for delivery in three months climbed 2.4 percent to $7,630 a metric ton ($3.46 a pound) at 5:50 p.m., the biggest increase since Jan. 2. Aluminum, zinc, lead, tin and nickel also gained.

In New York, copper futures for May delivery rose 2.1

GRAINS, OILSEEDS

Corn jumped the most in a month on signs that U.S. farmers are withholding grain after prices dropped to a nine-month low.

On the Chicago Board of Trade, corn futures for May delivery rose 1.7 percent to $6.4425 a bushel, the biggest gain since March 8.

Soybean futures for May delivery advanced 1.3 percent to $13.955 a bushel.

PRECIOUS METALS

Gold advanced to a one-week high and silver jumped the most since January on speculation that central bankers in major economies will take more steps to bolster their economies, boosting demand for the metals as stores of value.

On the Comex, gold futures for June delivery climbed 0.9 percent to $1,586.70 an ounce. Earlier, the price reached $1,590.10, the highest since April 2.

Silver futures for May delivery increased 2.7 percent to $27.881 an ounce, the biggest gain since Jan. 30.

On the New York Mercantile Exchange, platinum futures for July delivery rose 1 percent to $1,553.10 an ounce.

CRUDE OIL

Crude oil rose the most in two weeks as the dollar weakened against the euro and the U.S. boosted its 2013 price forecast.

On the Nymex, oil futures for May delivery climbed 0.9 percent to $94.20 a barrel.

Brent crude for May settlement advanced 1.5 percent to $106.23 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange.

Total SA failed to buy more North Sea Forties crude. The company has bought seven cargoes since March 27 and chartered its second tanker this year to transport the grade to South Korea.

OIL PRODUCTS

Gasoline advanced as the euro strengthened against the dollar, increasing the investment appeal of commodities.

On the Nymex, gasoline futures for May delivery rose 1.1 percent to $2.9424 a gallon.

SOFT COMMODITIES

Orange-juice futures rose on speculation that the U.S. government will reduce its estimate for Florida’s crop for the fifth straight month.

On ICE Futures U.S. in New York, orange juice for May delivery climbed 1.5 percent to $1.4765 a pound.

Cocoa futures for July delivery rose 1.2 percent to $2,233 a ton.

Raw-sugar futures for July delivery increased 0.2 percent to 17.72 cents a pound.

Arabica-coffee futures for May delivery declined 0.4 percent to $1.354 a pound.

NATURAL GAS

Natural gas slipped for the second straight day on forecasts of moderate weather in the eastern third of the U.S. that would reduce fuel demand.

On the Nymex, gas futures for May delivery dropped 1.6 percent to $4.017 per million British thermal units.

U.K. gas for next-week delivery fell 1.1 percent to 68.5

LIVESTOCK

Hogs dropped for the third time in four sessions on signs that export demand for U.S. pork is ebbing.

On the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, hog futures for June settlement fell 0.8 percent to 89.85 cents a pound.

Cattle futures for June delivery slid 0.3 percent to $1.217 a pound.

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