Cotton shoots higher; other commodities are mixed

Cotton prices jumped 4 percent on rumors of tight supplies Wednesday, but analysts say the advance may be overdone. Other commodities prices ended mixed.

Cotton for December delivery surged 3 cents, its daily limit, to 77.86 cents per pound. Jack Scoville of Price Futures Group said the gain came on speculative buying and rumors of short supplies.

But Scoville said many traders "remain bearish overall" about cotton prices since more supply should be coming on the market as the harvest proceeds. "Many analysts now think prices will need to go lower to create new demand," Scoville wrote in a note to clients.

Sharon Johnson of Knight Futures wrote in a note to clients that despite Wednesday's surge, the market still has "overwhelmingly bearish fundamentals." If prices don't come down this fall, she said, there will be less potential for gains in the second half of the crop year from February through July.

Metals prices rose broadly. In December contracts, Gold rose $6.70 to settle at $1,753 an ounce, silver rose 27.3 cents to $33.232 an ounce, palladium rose $14.45 to $653.40 an ounce and high grade copper rose 4.8 cents to $3.748 per pound. January platinum rose $25.30 to $1,670.50 per ounce.

Energy prices were mixed. Benchmark oil gained 3 cents to $92.12 in New York. It rose as high as $92.85 per barrel in the morning.

In other energy futures trading on the Nymex, heating oil fell 0.91 cent to $3.1894 per gallon, natural gas gained 3.3 cents to $3.47 per 1,000 cubic feet and wholesale gasoline fell 6.36 cents to $2.7817 per gallon.

December wheat rose 8.5 cents to end at $8.5625 per bushel, December corn rose 7.25 cents to $7.4550 per bushel and November soybeans gained 1.55 cents to $15.0925 per bushel.