GO
Loading...

COMMODITIES-Arabica coffee at 1-year high; soybeans at 5-mth peak

NEW YORK, Feb 18 (Reuters) - The bull run in arabica coffee futures continued on Tuesday, surging to a one-year high on worries about a drought in Brazil, and concern about South American crop weather also pushed soybeans to a five-month peak. U.S. natural gas also rose, flirting with a four-year high as forecasts called for below-normal temperatures across the United States that should boost heating demand and shrink end-of-season gas stockpiles to the lowest since 2003. Raw sugar prices were at their strongest in two weeks. Silver, crude oil and gasoline were among other markets that rose at least 1 percent each on the day. The Thomson Reuters/Core Commodity Index jumped 1.5 percent, its highest level since March 2013. Sixteen of the 19 components on the commodities bellwether were up on the day. Arabica prices jumped almost 9 percent, gaining for a second straight day. Arabica has risen in eight of the 11 sessions in February, making it the CRB's best performer year-to-date with a 40 percent gain. "I think we have a lot more upside," a U.S.-based arabica trader said, adding that funds were taking new long positions and covering shorts on the belief that Brazil will not get the rain needed to recover from the drought. Persistent dry conditions in Brazil have many now believing the country's coffee production will be curbed. Brazilian forecaster Somar said light rainfall will continue after three days of heavier rains broke a long period of drought, though rains will ease in some regions. The benchmark second-month arabica futures contract in New York was up 12.65 cents, or 8.9 percent, at $1.5495 per lb by 1:38 p.m. EST (1838 GMT). Earlire, it reached $1.5665, the highest since January 2013. Soybean prices also rose on worries about drought in Brazil and inclement weather in another major South American soy producer, Argentina. Analysts at Brazilian consultancy AgRural shaved 1.8 million tonnes off their estimate for Brazil's 2013-14 soybean crop on Monday, saying drought in much of the country in recent weeks had reduced yields. In Argentina's main soybean-growing region, weeks of heavy rain have encouraged the spread of caterpillars that are eating into the 2013/14 season's crop yields, a climate expert said on Monday. U.S. soybeans' front-month contract jumped 23-1/4 cents, or 1.7 percent, in Chicago trading to reach $13.60-3/4 per bushel, the highest for a spot-month soybean contract since Sept. 19. Prices at 1:47 p.m. EST (1847 GMT)

LAST NET PCT CHG CHG US crude 101.83 1.53 1.5% Brent crude 109.94 0.76 0.7% Natural gas 5.503 0.289 5.5% US gold 1324.00 5.40 0.4% Gold 1323.56 -4.93 -0.4% US Copper 3.29 0.02 0.6% LME Copper 7189.00 16.50 0.2% Dollar 80.004 -0.132 -0.2% CRB 297.803 4.565 1.6% US corn 448.50 3.25 0.7% US soybeans 1360.75 23.25 1.7% US wheat 611.50 13.00 2.2% US Coffee 153.00 13.10 9.4% US Cocoa 2923.00 -11.00 -0.4% US Sugar 16.22 0.59 3.8% US silver 21.900 0.005 2.2% US platinum 1424.40 -5.70 -0.4% US palladium 737.00 -0.60 -0.1%