Bloomberg News

Crude Oil Rises; Gold, Copper Rebound: Commodities at Close

May 17, 2012

The Standard & Poor’s GSCI gauge of 24 commodities climbed 0.4 percent to 635.62 at 4:45 p.m. Singapore time. The UBS Bloomberg CMCI index of 26 raw materials rose 0.4 percent to 1,500.8022.

CRUDE OIL

Oil rose from the lowest settlement in six months in New York after economic data in Japan beat estimates and technical indicators signaled declines in crude prices may be exaggerated.

Crude for June delivery rose as much as 91 cents to $93.72 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange and was at $93.25 at 3:04 p.m. Singapore time. The contract yesterday fell 1.2 percent to $92.81, the lowest close since Nov. 2. Prices are down 5.7 percent this year.

NATURAL GAS

Natural gas futures climbed for a third day in New York as predictions of rising temperatures signaled increased demand for the fuel for cooling.

Futures rose as much as 1.2 percent after settling yesterday at the highest level in almost 12 weeks. A “surge of warming” in the Midwest and mid-Atlantic states will occur over the next six to 10 days, Commodity Weather Group in Bethesda, Maryland, forecast. Prices have rebounded 39 percent since dropping to a 10-year low last month, on speculation electricity generators will burn a record amount of gas this year.

OIL PRODUCTS

The premium of gasoil, or diesel, to Asian marker Dubai crude fell 10 cents to $15.84 a barrel at 12:15 p.m. Singapore time, according to data from PVM Oil Associates Ltd., a broker. This crack spread, a measure of processing profit, narrowed for the third time in four days. Gasoil swaps for June dropped 80 cents, or 0.7 percent, to $122.10 a barrel, PVM data showed. That’s the lowest since Dec. 27.

Naphtha swaps for June declined $6, or 0.7 percent, to $885 a metric ton, according to PVM. The petrochemical feedstock is down for a 16th day, the longest losing streak in records going back to January 2011. Naphtha’s premium to London-traded Brent crude futures increased $11.55 to $60.93 a ton, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The difference, also known as the crack spread, rebounded from the narrowest since Nov. 29.

PRECIOUS METALS

Gold rebounded from the lowest level in almost five months as the metal’s slump, driven by concerns about Greece’s possible exit from the euro and a stronger dollar, encouraged buying from investors. Silver and platinum advanced.

Spot gold rose for the first time in five days, gaining as much as 0.9 percent to $1,553.93 an ounce and trading at $1,547.18 at 3:12 p.m. in Singapore. The metal fell to $1,526.97 yesterday, the lowest price since Dec. 29 and down 21 percent from an intraday record in September. Bullion’s so-called 14-day relative-strength index was at 27.17, below the level of 30 that may indicate a rebound.

Cash platinum, the only precious metal still higher this year, gained for the first time in eight days, snapping the longest slump in 11 months. It gained as much as 1.4 percent to $1,452.38 an ounce before trading at $1,445.50 after tumbling to $1,422.50 yesterday, the lowest level since Jan. 10.

BASE METALS

Copper rebounded from a four-month low as optimism that the Federal Reserve may do more to stimulate the U.S. economy and rising cash premiums in Shanghai spurred speculation that demand will improve. Aluminum and zinc also advanced.

The metal for three-month delivery rose for the first time in five days, gaining as much as 1.6 percent to $7,775.75 a metric ton on the London Metal Exchange, before trading at $7,748.25 at 3 p.m. Shanghai time. The contract slid to $7,625 yesterday, the lowest since Jan. 10, with the relative strength index falling to 29.86, below the 30 level that suggests an oversold condition. The RSI was last below 30 in October.

GRAINS, SOFT COMMODITIES

Wheat gained for a fourth-day, the longest winning streak since January, on concern dry weather in the U.S., Australia and Russia may hurt yields in the world’s three biggest shippers this year.

The July-delivery contract gained as much as 1.4 percent to $6.4775 a bushel, extending yesterday’s 5 percent jump, the biggest advance for the most-active contract since March 30. It traded at $6.425, up 0.6 percent by 3:42 p.m. Singapore time.

Corn for July delivery was little changed at $6.195 a bushel, after jumping 3.8 percent yesterday. Futures advanced after the U.S. Department of Agriculture said that China bought 900,000 metric tons of the grain from U.S. exporters, including 660,000 tons previously reported as sold to unknown destination.

Soybeans for July delivery gained for a third day, rising as much as 1 percent to $14.355 a bushel, before trading at $14.325.

Rubber gained the most in four months after data showed Japan’s economy expanded faster than estimated last quarter and as oil snapped a four-day losing streak, raising the appeal of the commodity used in tires.

October-delivery rubber advanced as much as 3.6 percent to 274.7 yen a kilogram ($3,420 a metric ton), the biggest gain for a most-active contract since Jan. 17, before settling at 273.6 yen on the Tokyo Commodity Exchange.

Palm oil rebounded from the biggest drop in more than 14 months as the slump, driven by concern that Europe’s debt crisis will worsen with the possible exit of Greece from the euro region, prompted buying from consumers.

To contact the reporter on this story: Christian Schmollinger in Singapore at christian.s@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Alexander Kwiatkowski at akwiatkowsk2@bloomberg.net


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