Daily Recap of the Metals, Energy, Grains, Meats, and Softs Markets
Corn slid to an 8-month low today, with the December contract settling 3 1/2 cents lower at $4.84 per bushel. An unexpected jump of corn inventories in the US due to slowing demand was noted for the modest decline in corn futures today.
Corn inventories in the U.S. as of Sept. 1 were pegged at 1.624 billion bushels, reported the U.S. Department of Agriculture today. Analysts were expecting a fall of 1.539 billion. The USDA also predicted a 14-percent decline in demand for corn feed.
Soybeans closed higher for the first time in a week, with the November contract settling 8 cents higher at $10.53 a bushel. Farm groups in Argentina, the worlds third largest producer, is threatening to slash output in response to government export restrictions. December soy-meal settled $1.20 higher at $286.20 per short ton, and December soy-oil closed 20 points higher at 44.68 cents per pound.
Wheat closed 1.5-percent lower today, with the December contract settling 10 1/4 cents lower at $6.69 3/4 a bushel. Strength in the U.S. dollar and technical weakness was noted for much of the decline.
Crude oil fell 2.1-percent today, with the November contract settling $2.11 lower at $98.53 a barrel. Strength in the U.S. dollar and a larger than expected build in U.S. crude oil inventories was noted for todays decline.
The EIA reported today, that U.S. inventories of crude oil rose 4.28 million barrels to 294.5 million last week, with analysts forecasting a build of about 2.5 million barrels. Refinery utilization increased 5.6-percent to 72.3-percent after storms reduced supplies last month.
November RBOB gasoline rose 9.6 cents to settle at $2.4577 a gallon, November heating oil gained 10.6 cents to closeat $2.8947 a gallon, November natural gas rose 21.7 cents to finish at $7.438 per million British thermal units.
Precious metals were higher today, with December gold settling $6.50 higher at $887.30 an ounce. Flight-to-safety buyers were active today as the market anticipates a U.S. Senate vote on the financial bailout plan which is slated for Wednesday night.
Copper fell to the lowest level since March 2007, with the December contract settling 12.5 cents, or 4.3-percent, lower at $2.7540 a pound. Speculation that the slumping U.S. housing market weakness will continue thus reducing demand for copper was noted for the decline.
December silver settled 49.5 cents higher at $12.77 an ounce, January platinum rose $14.60 to close at $1,043.10 an ounce, and December palladium gained $8.25 to $210.95 an ounce.
Coffee fell to a fresh yearly low, with the December contract settling 135 points lower at $1.2910 a pound. The slowing economy, combined with the rise in the value of the U.S. dollar was noted for much of todays decline.
Cotton had its largest rally in over a week, with the March contract settling 1.02 cents higher at 62.77 cents a pound. Stronger than expected U.S. export sales and speculation that cotton is oversold was noted for the rally.
November orange juice settled 240 points lower at 86.80 cents a
pound, March sugar settled 27 points higher at 13.93 cents a pound, and December cocoa settled $47 lower at $2,511 a metric ton.
Cattle futures closed lower today with October feeder cattle finishing 45 points lower at 103.55 cents a pound. Falling cash prices and speculation that demand will fall was noted for the decline for cattle today. October live cattle settled 32 points lower at 98.57 cents a pound.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture's midday beef wire for Wednesday showed choice cuts fell $0.28 per hundredweight, while select items were $0.31 per hundredweight lower.
Hogs settled mixed today with October lean hogs settling 85 points lower at 67.72 cents a pound. Lower than anticipated midday direct cash hog quotes, and fund liquidation was noted for the decline. February pork bellies settled 160 points lower, at 92.15 cents a pound.