COMMODITIES-Oil up on more Libya worry; Yellen speech aids gold

Thursday, 14 Nov 2013 | 5:45 PM ET

NEW YORK, Nov 14 (Reuters) - The benchmark price of oil rose a second straight day on Thursday on worries about crude supply disruptions in Libya, and gold extended gains as the incoming Federal Reserve chief indicated continued support for the U.S. stimulus. Copper ended marginally higher after the industrial metal initially plumbed a near 3-month low on fears about poor economic data out of Europe. Crop prices finished broadly lower for a second session in a row. Arabica coffee closed down near a 7-year low in New York on worries about excessive stockpiles and a looming giant Brazilian harvest. White sugar in London fell to a 2010 bottom, also on concerns about surplus stocks. Corn ended down in Chicago on speculation that the U.S. government might soon lower its requirement on the amount of corn-based ethanol blended into fuel for 2014. Despite the broad losses in agriculture, the 19-commodity Thomson Reuters/Core Commodity CRB index settled up slightly, supported by the higher oil and metals prices. Benchmark Brent crude oil out of Europe's North Sea settled up $1.42 at $108.54 a barrel. It has rallied by more than 5 percent since it hit a 4-month low near $103 last week. Brent found support from ongoing supply problems in North Africa and the Middle East. The International Energy Agency said the oil market looked well supplied, but output woes in Libya and Iraq, as well as increased demand from the Northern Hemisphere's winter, could lift prices. Sharp gains in U.S. gasoline, which rose more than 2 percent, also helped Brent prices on Thursday. U.S. crude oil slipped 12 cents to settle at $93.76 after a government report showed crude inventories in the United States, the world's largest oil consumer, rose by 2.6 million barrels last week, far more than the 1 million barrels predicted In gold, the spot price was up nearly half percent at above $1,286 an ounce at 5:30 p.m. ET, after rising nearly 1 percent on Wednesday to snapping four-day losing streak. Gold found support from confirmation by incoming Federal Reserve chief Janet Yellen that the U.S. central bank's loose monetary policy could be extended.

(Editing by David Gregorio)