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Commodities markets summary

Reported by AAP
Tuesday, October 21, 2014
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A summary of trading in key commodities markets overseas:

ENERGY

Oil prices have dipped on concerns about high supplies and more signs from key Middle Eastern producers that OPEC has no plans to cut crude output.

US benchmark West Texas Intermediate for November delivery slipped four cents to $US82.71 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

European benchmark Brent oil for December delivery fell 76 cents to $US85.40 a barrel in London.

Monday's market was preoccupied with slowing economic conditions in Europe and China and with "more than ample (oil) supplies that will slosh around the world", said Gene McGillian, broker and analyst at Tradition Energy.

The market also reacted to reports that Iran would not seek an emergency meeting of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries to cut output in response to falling prices.

OPEC's biggest producer, Saudi Arabia, has previously signalled plans to keep production high.

PRECIOUS METALS

Gold prices advanced as declines in the dollar and Treasury yields bolster the precious metal's appeal as a haven.

The most actively traded contract, for December delivery, on Monday rose $US5.70, or 0.5 per cent, to settle at $US1,244.70 a troy ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Gold prices continued to march higher as recent losses in US equities spurred investor interest in protective assets. Stocks have posted four straight weeks of declines, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average erasing its gains for 2014.

A weaker US dollar, which retreated from the euro, also lent gold a hand. The common European currency was recently trading at $US1.2796, up from $US1.2731 earlier.

BASE METALS

Copper futures fell for the third time in four sessions on mounting concern that a slowing economy will curb demand in China, the world's top metal consumer.

In the third quarter, the Chinese economy probably expanded at the weakest pace since 2009, the median estimate in a Bloomberg survey showed before official figures due on Tuesday.

Trading was 35 per cent below the average in the past 100 days, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. On October 17, the metal touched $US2.9515, the lowest for a most-active contract since March 25.

On the LME, copper for delivery in three months fell 1.2 per cent to $US6,560 a metric ton. The price has dropped 11 per cent in 2014.

Zinc, lead and nickel declined in London, while tin advanced. Aluminium was unchanged.

22/10/2014 05:23Sydney, Australia. 22 October,2014
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