Metals, Oil, Cotton Tumble as Cocoa Rises: Commodities at CloseChristine Harvey
The Standard & Poor’s GSCI gauge of 24 commodities dropped 2.1 percent to 611.06 at 4:33 p.m. in New York. Metals, energy products and cotton were among the leading decliners.
The UBS Bloomberg CMCI index of 26 raw materials was down 2 percent at 1,450.254.
Copper in London fell the most in a year, while tin and nickel tumbled into bear markets, as slower manufacturing growth fueled concern that demand will fade in China and the U.S., the world’s biggest metals consumers.
On the London Mercantile Exchange, copper for delivery in three months lost 3.7 percent to settle at $6,795 a metric ton ($3.08 a pound), the biggest drop since April 10, 2012. The metal has decreased 14 percent this year.
Aluminum, lead, nickel, tin and zinc also declined in London. Tin settled at $19,975 a ton, down 20 percent from a January closing high, meeting the common definition of a bear market. Nickel fell to $14,825 a ton, or 21 percent below its closing high on Oct. 1.
In New York, copper futures for delivery in July fell 3.4 percent to close at $3.08 a pound on the Comex, the biggest retreat in two weeks.
Base metals markets: NI BMMKTS
Gold fell the most in two weeks as the Federal Reserve signaled it is ready to curb a bond-buying program as needed and inflation remained in check, eroding demand for the precious metal as a hedge.
Gold futures for June delivery retreated 1.8 percent to settle at $1,446.20 an ounce on the Comex.
Silver futures for July delivery dropped 3.5 percent to settle at $23.343 an ounce on the Comex. Prices slumped 15 percent last month, the most since December 2011.
On the New York Mercantile Exchange, platinum futures for July delivery fell 2.5 percent to $1,469.50 an ounce. The metal declined 4.3 percent last month, the third straight slump.
Palladium futures for June delivery dropped 1.9 percent to $684.75 an ounce. In April, the price tumbled 9.2 percent, the most since May.
Precious metal markets: NI PCMKTS
West Texas Intermediate crude tumbled as U.S. oil inventories reached an 82-year high amid signs of economic slowdown in the U.S. and China.
WTI for June delivery retreated $2.43, or 2.6 percent, to settle at $91.03 a barrel on the Nymex, falling the most since April 15.
Brent for June settlement slid $2.42, or 2.4 percent, to $99.95 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange. Brent’s premium to WTI widened 1 cent to $8.92.
Oil markets: NI CRMKTS
Natural gas futures slid in New York for a second day on forecasts for milder weather that would limit demand for the heating and power-plant fuel.
Natural gas for June delivery fell 1.7 cents to settle at $4.326 per million British thermal units on the Nymex. The futures have climbed 29 percent this year. Prices earlier rose to $4.444, the highest level since July 25, 2011.
U.S. natural gas: NI NUSMKT
Gasoline fell the most in four weeks after the government reported that East Coast supplies of the motor fuel increased to the highest level in more than a year.
Gasoline for June delivery tumbled 8.27 cents, or 3 percent, to settle at $2.7193 a gallon on the Nymex. Futures fell the most in a day since April 3.
Ultra-low-sulfur diesel for June delivery dropped 5.07 cents, or 1.8 percent, to $2.7889 a gallon on the Nymex.
Oil Products: NI OPFMKT
Wheat fell for the first time this week on speculation that rising world supplies will make up for declining output in the U.S. Great Plains, where cold and dry weather damaged crops. Corn and soybeans also dropped.
Wheat futures for delivery in July dropped 1.4 percent to close at $7.21 a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade, after rising 5.6 percent in the previous two days. Prices are in a bear market, dropping 24 percent from a closing high on July 20. July wheat futures on the Kansas City Board of Trade fell 0.9 percent to $7.8225.
Corn futures for delivery in July declined 0.5 percent to $6.4675 a bushel in Chicago, after falling 1.5 percent yesterday to cap a 6.5 percent drop in April.
Soybeans for July delivery fell 1.9 percent to $13.73 on the CBOT, the biggest slide since March 28.
Grains markets: NI GRMKTS
Cocoa futures jumped to a four-month high on signs that global supplies remain limited. Cotton, sugar, coffee and orange juice fell as commodities slumped.
Cocoa for July delivery climbed 2 percent to settle at $2,415 a metric ton on ICE Futures U.S. in New York. Earlier, the price reached $2,421, the highest level for a most-active contract since Dec. 17.
Cotton futures for July delivery sank 4.1 percent to 83.87 cents a pound, the biggest slide since June 21.
Also in New York, raw-sugar for July delivery sank 1.5 percent to 17.33 cents a pound, the first decrease in five sessions. The price is down 11 percent this year.
Arabica-coffee futures for July delivery slipped 0.3 percent to $1.347 a pound. Orange-juice futures for July delivery dropped 1 percent to $1.39 a pound. Earlier, the price touched $1.359, the lowest level since April 3.
Soft commodities markets: NI SOMKTS
Cattle futures rose for the first time in four sessions on speculation that U.S. beef demand will outpace supplies. Hogs also gained.
Cattle futures for June delivery rose 0.5 percent to settle at $1.22475 a pound on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, the first gain since April 25.
Feeder-cattle futures for August settlement slipped 0.1 percent to $1.48725 a pound. Hog futures for June settlement added 0.4 percent to 92.95 cents a pound. Prices are up 8.4 percent this year.
Spot hogs rose for the seventh straight session yesterday to 83.73 cents a pound, the highest level since Feb. 13, according to USDA data. Prices are up 3.9 percent this year.
Livestock markets: NI LVMKTS