Sun, Jul 29, 2012 - Page 15 News List

Commodity prices downbeat despite late Draghi lift

MIXED METALS:Gold prices rose as the metal profited from its status as a safe haven, while base metals prices declined after traders took profit

AFP, LONDON

Oil and metals prices mostly fell this week, despite rallies caused by reassurances about securing the euro’s future and positive Chinese data, analysts said.

News on Friday that US growth slowed to 1.5 percent in the second quarter added to the downbeat sentiment.

OIL: World oil prices eased despite rising for much of the week, as concerns over the eurozone debt crisis offset Middle East supply concerns and positive economic data out of raw materials-hungry China.

European Central Bank President Mario Draghi on Thursday pledged to “do whatever it takes” to preserve the euro, providing some support to crude futures.

Banking giant HSBC on Tuesday said its purchasing managers’ index for China, which measures manufacturing activity, hit a five-month peak of 49.5 this month, well up from the 48.2 recorded last month.

HSBC said government measures to boost growth in China, including interest rate cuts, were working.

Oil prices had hit two-month highs the previous week as traders worried that rising tensions in the crude-rich Middle East — particularly in Iran and Syria — would hamper supplies.

By late Friday on London’s Intercontinental Exchange, Brent North Sea crude for delivery in September dipped to US$105.94 from US$105.98 a week earlier.

On the New York Mercantile Exchange, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) or light sweet crude for September stood at US$89.90 a barrel compared with US$90.91 for the August contract a week earlier.

PRECIOUS METALS: Gold prices climbed as the metal profited from its status as a safe haven in times of economic unrest, while platinum and palladium hit the lowest levels since late last year.

Silver climbed to US$27.73 an ounce from US$27.07.

On the London Platinum and Palladium Market, platinum gained to US$1,410 an ounce from US$1,408.

Palladium dipped to US$574 an ounce from US$577 an ounce.

BASE METALS: Base metals prices on the London Metal Exchange fell across the board as traders banked profits after gains won on the back of Draghi’s comments and positive Chinese data.

By late Friday on the London Metal Exchange, copper for delivery in three months dipped to US$7,537 a tonne from US$7,603 a week earlier.

Three-month aluminum fell to US$1,888 a tonne from US$1,912. Three-month lead edged down to US$1,900 a tonne from US$1,901.

Three-month tin edged down to US$18,035 a tonne from US$19,050, and three-month nickel slipped to US$15,930 a tonne from US$15,953.

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