Bloomberg News

Corn, Wheat Surge on USDA Supply Outlook: Commodities at Close

March 30, 2012

The Standard & Poor’s GSCI gauge of 24 commodities gained 0.9 percent to 690.1501 by 4:49 p.m. in London, and earlier gained the most since March 23. The UBS Bloomberg CMCI index of 26 raw materials was up 1.2 percent to 1603.961. In the GSCI, corn and wheat were up the most, at 5.9 percent and 5.3 percent, and feed cattle was down the most, at 0.8 percent.

GRAINS, OILSEEDS

Corn and wheat prices surged, and soybeans jumped the most since mid-January, after a government report signaled tighter U.S. crop supplies than analysts expected.

U.S. farmers will plant 73.9 million acres with soybeans this year, down 1.4 percent, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said in a report today. Analysts surveyed by Bloomberg forecast 75.43 million acres. In a separate report, the USDA said corn inventories on March 1 fell 7.9 percent from a year earlier and were the lowest for that time of year since 2004, while wheat supplies fell 16 percent.

Corn for May delivery jumped 5.8 percent to $6.39 a bushel in Chicago, heading for the biggest gain since Oct. 11. Before today, the price fell 6.6 percent this year.

Wheat futures for May delivery gained 5.2 percent to $6.44 a bushel in Chicago, the biggest jump since Oct. 11. Before today, the price lost 6.2 percent this year.

Soybean futures for May delivery surged 4.2 percent to $14.12 a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade, heading for the biggest gain since Jan. 9.

Grain markets: NI GRMKTS

SOFT COMMODITIES

Arabica coffee for May delivery jumped the most since November, rising as much as 4.2 percent to $1.838 a pound on ICE Futures U.S. in New York. Robusta coffee for May delivery fell 0.4 percent to $2,033 a ton on NYSE Liffe in London.

Cocoa for May delivery rose 0.2 percent to $2,228 a ton in New York after dropping as much as 4.4 percent yesterday as inventories rose. Raw sugar for May delivery slipped 0.3 percent to 24.53 cents a pound on ICE.

Soft commodities markets: NI SOMKTS

BASE METALS:

Copper, set for the biggest quarterly gain since 2010, rose in New York on signals of economic expansion in U.S, the world’s second-biggest consumer of the metal.

Copper for May delivery added 0.8 percent to $3.8275 a pound on the Comex in New York. Prices are up 11 percent this quarter, the most since the three months through December 2010. The three-month contract rose 1.2 percent to $8,452 a metric ton on the London Metal Exchange. Nickel, lead and tin gained, while aluminum and zinc fell.

Base metals markets: NI BMMKTS

PRECIOUS METALS

Gold climbed as the dollar dropped after European finance ministers agreed to increase rescue funds for indebted nations. Platinum headed for the biggest three-month gain since 2009.

Gold futures for June delivery rose 0.6 percent to $1,664.60 an ounce on the Comex. Prices gained 5.6 percent this quarter through yesterday.

Silver futures for May delivery increased 1.2 percent to $32.37 an ounce on the Comex. On the New York Mercantile Exchange, platinum futures for July delivery climbed 0.7 percent to $1,640.20 an ounce and palladium futures for June delivery advanced 0.5 percent to $647.70 an ounce.

Precious metal markets: NI PCMKTS

CRUDE OIL

Oil climbed, heading for a second quarterly gain, after reports showed that U.S. consumer sentiment and spending gained and euro-area finance ministers agreed to boost rescue funds.

Crude oil for May delivery rose 68 cents, or 0.7 percent, to $103.46 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Prices are up 4.7 percent for the quarter after a gain of 25 percent in the last quarter of 2011.

Brent oil for May settlement gained 81 cents, or 0.7 percent, to $123.20 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange.

Crude oil futures: NI CRMKTS

NATURAL GAS

Natural gas futures, heading for the worst quarter in two years, fluctuated near a 10-year low on speculation that prices won’t fall much further.

Natural gas for May delivery rose 0.1 cent to $2.15 per million British thermal units on the New York Mercantile Exchange, after sliding to $2.113, the lowest intraday price since February 2002. Prices are down 28 percent this year.

U.K. summer natural gas rose on the last day of trading for the contract as traders expected higher heating demand next week and lower flows from Norway.

The summer contract climbed 0.45 pence to 61.2 pence, according to broker prices compiled by Bloomberg.

U.K. natural gas: NI NUKMKT Gas market: NI GASMARKET Americas natural gas: NI AGASMARKET European natural gas: NI EGASMARKET

OIL PRODUCTS

Futures gained a second day as East Coast refining capacity declined 36 percent from July, leaving gasoline supply in the region at an 11-week low, according to Energy Department data.

Gasoline for April delivery rose 1.57 cents, or 0.5 percent, to $3.4163 a gallon on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Futures have climbed 27 percent this year.

April-delivery heating oil added 0.61 cent to $3.165 a gallon on the Nymex, and is heading for a 7.8 percent first- quarter gain.

European gasoline’s premium to Brent, or crack, rose, extending its largest quarterly advance in more than three years. Gasoil fell, paring a gain in the last three months.

Gasoline for immediate delivery in the Amsterdam-Rotterdam- Antwerp area traded from $1,201 and $1,205 a metric ton, according to a survey of brokers and traders monitoring the Argus Bulletin Board.

Oil Products Europe: NI OPEMKT Gasoline: NI GASOLINE Heating oil: NI HEATOIL

European Carbon Permits: European Union carbon permits headed for their fourth quarterly loss even as regional equities advanced. Allowances for December gained 2.6 percent to 7.03 euros ($9.39) a metric ton on ICE Futures Europe Exchange in London.

EU Carbon Emissions: NI ECBMKT

LIVESTOCK

Hog futures rose for the first time in three sessions on speculation demand for pork may climb. Cattle prices fell.

Hog futures for June settlement rose 0.7 percent to 90.75 cents a pound on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange.

Cattle futures for June delivery fell 0.3 percent to $1.181 a pound in Chicago. A close at that level would send prices down 9 percent in March, the biggest monthly decline in six years.

Feeder-cattle futures for May settlement dropped 0.7 percent to $1.508 a pound in Chicago.

Livestock markets: NI LVMKTS

To contact the reporter on this story: Maria Kolesnikova in London at mkolesnikova@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: John Deane at jdeane3@bloomberg.net


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