-- The Standard & Poor’s GSCI Spot Index of 24 raw materials fell 1 percent to settle at 651.87 at 4 p.m. New York time, led by grains.
The UBS Bloomberg CMCI index of 26 prices declined 1.2 percent to 1,601.91.
Soybean futures fell to the lowest in seven weeks on speculation that slowing growth in China and Europe will cut demand for supplies from the U.S., the world’s biggest producer.
Economic growth in China, the top importer and consumer of the oilseed, may fall to a 22-year low of 7.5 percent this year, Morgan Stanley said Sept. 19. European equities tumbled as protests in the region against austerity measures fueled concern the debt crisis will worsen.
On the Chicago Board of Trade, soybean futures for November delivery slumped 2.4 percent to $15.73 a bushel after touching $15.65, the lowest for a most-active contract since Aug. 8.
Corn futures for December delivery declined 2.6 percent to $7.2475 a bushel after touching $7.225, the lowest since July 12.
Wheat futures for December delivery slid 1.9 percent to $8.6925 a bushel, the biggest drop since Sept. 17.
Copper tumbled to the lowest in almost two weeks on concern that stimulus measures from central banks will fail to revive economies amid the deteriorating European debt crisis and a deepening slowdown in China.
On the Comex in New York, copper futures for December delivery dropped 1.3 percent to $3.71 a pound. Earlier, the price touched $3.6805, the lowest since Sept. 13.
Copper for delivery in three months fell 1.9 percent to $8,120 a metric ton ($3.68 a pound) on the London Metal Exchange, the biggest decline since July 23. Zinc, aluminum, tin, lead and nickel also dropped.
Gold dropped to a two-week low as the dollar rose amid concern that the crisis in Spain is worsening, crimping demand for the metal as an alternative investment.
On the Comex, gold futures for December delivery dropped 0.7 percent to $1,753.60 an ounce. Earlier, the price touched $1,738.30, the lowest since Sept. 13.
Silver futures for December delivery fell less than 0.1 percent to $33.94 an ounce.
On the New York Mercantile Exchange, platinum futures for January delivery rose 0.2 percent to $1,639.20 an ounce. Palladium futures for December delivery dropped 2.3 percent to $625.85 an ounce.
Crude oil settled below $90 a barrel for the first time in almost eight weeks as the government reported lower petroleum demand and Europe’s woes escalated, damping prospects for fuel use.
On the Nymex, oil futures for November delivery fell 1.5 percent to $89.98 a barrel, the lowest settlement since Aug. 2.
Brent oil for November settlement dropped 0.4 percent to $110.04 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange.
Vitol Group sold Russian Urals crude in the Mediterranean at a lower price than its offer yesterday. No bids or offers were made for North Sea Forties.
Russia will reduce October crude exports from the Black Sea port of Novorossiysk after one cargo of 80,000 metric tons was dropped, according to a final loading program obtained by Bloomberg News.
Cattle futures slumped to a four-week low on speculation that demand for U.S. beef is weakening.
On the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, cattle futures for December delivery declined 0.5 percent to $1.2475 a pound after reaching $1.24075, the lowest since Aug. 29.
Feeder-cattle futures for November settlement rose 0.5 percent to settle at $1.472 a pound.
Hog futures for December settlement declined 0.4 percent to settle at 74.375 cents a pound. The price is down 22 percent this quarter.
Sugar retreated for the first time in a week as Europe’s debt crisis escalated, signaling lower demand for raw materials.
On ICE Futures U.S. in New York, raw sugar for March delivery fell 1.6 percent to 20.38 cents a pound, the first decline since Sept. 19.
Arabica-coffee futures for December delivery slumped 2.4 percent to $1.6945 a pound.
Cocoa futures for December delivery slid 0.6 percent to $2,469 a ton.
Cotton futures for December delivery fell 1.8 percent to 71.02 cents a pound.
Orange-juice futures for November delivery declined 1.3 percent to $1.13 a pound, the fifth straight drop.
Gasoline jumped the most in 12 weeks as refinery shutdowns in the U.S., Canada and Europe reduced East Coast inventories to the lowest in almost four years.
On the Nymex, gasoline futures for October delivery rose 3.8 percent to $3.0811 a gallon, the highest settlement since Aug. 31.
Heating-oil futures for October delivery slid 0.1 percent to $3.1068 a gallon.
Natural gas advanced to the highest in two weeks as concern eased that supplies would test storage limits before demand picks up with colder weather.
On the Nymex, gas futures for October delivery jumped 3.4 percent to $3.023 per million British thermal units, the first settlement above $3 since Sept. 13 and the biggest increase since Sept. 11.
U.K. gas for delivery next month fell as Gassco AS said that maintenance at an import terminal in Scotland ended earlier than scheduled and milder weather curbed demand for the heating fuel.
The price dropped as low as 58.5 pence a therm and was at 59.27 pence at 4:48 p.m. in London. That’s equal to $9.57 per million Btu. A therm is 100,000 Btu.
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