Copper Rises; Wheat Rebounds; Oil Declines: Commodities at Close
Oil slid for the first time in three days in New York on speculation that its surge to the highest level in three months yesterday may have been excessive.
West Texas Intermediate for February delivery dropped as much as 63 cents to $92.49 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange and was at $92.71 at 4:31 p.m. in Singapore. The contract yesterday climbed 1.4 percent to $93.12 a barrel, the highest settlement since Sept. 18. The volume was 30 percent below the 100-day average for the time of day.
Brent oil for February settlement on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange fell as much as 67 cents, or 0.6 percent, to $111.80 a barrel. Prices advanced 3.5 percent in 2012, a fourth annual gain. The number of contracts changing hands was 44 percent more than the 100-day average.
Asia gasoil’s premium to Dubai crude narrowed, indicating reduced profit from producing middle distillates. The fuel oil crack widened.
• Middle Distillates • Gasoil crack to Dubai crude down 19 cents to $19.21/bbl at 10:17 a.m. Singapore time, according to PVM Oil Associates Ltd. • Feb. gasoil swaps up 25 cents to $126.02/bbl • Jet fuel trades at a discount of 15 cents/bbl to gasoil, unchanged from yesterday
• Fuel Oil • High-sulfur fuel oil’s discount to Dubai widens 20 cents to $7.95/bbl, according to PVM • HSFO swaps for Feb. rise $1.50 to $627.75/ton, the most since Nov. 20. Traded at a discount of $2.50/ton to March contracts • Viscosity spread unchanged at $8.75/ton for a third day
• Light Distillates • Japan naphtha’s crack to Brent up $2.74 to $97.39/ton at 10:41 a.m., according to data compiled by Bloomberg • Feb. naphtha swap down 50 cents to $941.50/ton, PVM data shows. The price falls for a fourth day • Gasoline reforming margin declined 64 cents to $16.46/bbl yesterday, Bloomberg data show. It falls from the highest level in five weeks
Copper rose for a third day, pacing a rally in base metals, as expansion in China’s services industries boosted optimism the biggest consumer can sustain an economic rebound this year. Lead jumped to a 16-month high.
Gold swung between gains and losses as investors weighed the prospects for more stimulus measures from central banks against a stronger dollar curbing demand for bullion as an alternative investment.
Gold for immediate delivery was little changed at $1,685.54 an ounce by 9:32 a.m. in London after rising and falling as much as 0.2 percent. Gold for February delivery fell 0.2 percent to $1,686 an ounce on the Comex in New York.
GRAINS, OILSEEDS, SOFT COMMODITIES
Wheat rebounded from a six-month low on concern that dry weather in the U.S. will curb production from the world’s biggest exporter. Soybeans fell to a six-week low amid a forecast for record supply from Brazil.
Wheat for March delivery climbed as much as 0.8 percent to $7.6125 a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade and was at $7.5925 at 2:46 p.m. in Singapore. Prices slumped to $7.525 yesterday, the lowest for a most-active contract since June 29, on concern that overseas demand is slowing for U.S. supplies.
Soybeans for March delivery dropped as much as 0.5 percent to $13.85 a bushel, the lowest for a most-active contract since Nov. 20, and traded at $13.86. Production in Brazil may reach a record 83 million tons in the year from Feb. 1, boosting exports, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Corn for March delivery was little changed at $6.9175 a bushel.
Palm oil declined on concern that an advance to the highest level in two months yesterday may further reduce demand, which usually decreases during winter.
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