COMMODITIES-Oil prices down over Iran talks, weaker dollar lifts others
NEW YORK, Sept 25 (Reuters) - Oil prices fell on Wednesday but most other commodities closed up, after a drop in the dollar over worries about a potential U.S. government shutdown lifted futures of raw materials priced in the currency. Crude oil edged lower in choppy trading after comments from Iran's foreign minister revived hopes of progress in talks about Tehran's nuclear program. Data showing a large build in U.S. crude inventories also put pressure on oil prices. Gold, copper and most other commodities closed up after the dollar's first dip in five days as the clock ticked toward a deadline of Monday for the U.S. Congress to reach a budget deal that would keep the government running.
On the agricultural side, wheat staged its biggest rally in a month, rising nearly 2 percent, on hopes that U.S. supplies of the grain will gain traction in a competition to fill overseas demand. Raw sugar extended its rally from Tuesday, hitting 6-month highs, on chart-driven buying and fear that rains have hampered cane crushing activity in top sugar producing country Brazil. The Thomson Reuters-Jefferies CRB index, a bellwether for commodities, rose a quarter percent for its first gain in four sessions. Sixteen of the 19 components on the CRB finished higher. Benchmark Brent crude out of Europe's North Sea closed down 0.3 percent, or 32 cents, at $108.32 a barrel. U.S. crude settled down half a percent, or 47 cents, at $102.66. "We're in this cycle where the market keys off of positive or negative developments on solving the Iranian problem," said John Kilduff, partner at Again Capital LLC in New York. Brent prices initially tumbled before paring losses at the close after Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said he wanted a "jump-start" to negotiations aimed at resolving his country's decade-long dispute with the West over its nuclear program. In copper, the weaker dollar and solid demand from China helped stem three consecutive days of losses. The three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange was bid up 0.7 percent at the close, settling at $7,195 a tonne.
Prices at 4:00 p.m. EDT (2000 GMT)
LAST/ NET PCT YTD CLOSE CHG CHG CHG US crude 102.33 -0.80 -0.8% 11.4% Brent crude 108.01 -0.63 -0.6% -2.8% Natural gas 3.493 0.001 0.0% 4.2% US gold 1336.20 19.90 1.5% -20.3% Gold 1333.15 10.56 0.8% -20.4% US Copper 3.27 0.02 0.5% -10.5% LME Copper 7197.50 50.50 0.7% -9.2% Dollar 80.308 -0.255 -0.3% 4.6% CRB 285.879 0.711 0.3% -3.1% US corn 454.75 6.00 1.3% -34.9% US soybeans 1321.75 9.25 0.7% -6.8% US wheat 670.50 12.25 1.9% -13.8% US Coffee 117.25 -0.60 -0.5% -18.5% US Cocoa 2573.00 -30.00 -1.2% 15.1% US Sugar 17.62 0.20 1.1% -9.7% US silver 21.838 21.623 1.6% -27.8% US platinum 1428.80 10.00 0.0% -7.1% US palladium 724.20 5.85 0.8% 3.0%