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Platinum Posts Biggest Shortage Since 2002 as Output Contracts
The platinum market swung into the biggest shortage since 2002 last year as supply fell to a 12-year low on strikes and stoppages in top producer South Africa, according to Johnson Matthey Plc. (JMAT) The palladium deficit was the biggest since 2000.
A Mixed Rate of Corn Consumption, But Does It Matter?
Most of the discussion in the corn market has centered on U.S. planting progress, the likely magnitude of planted acreage, and the U.S. average yield potential. The pace of planting as revealed by the USDA's weekly Crop Progress report will continue to be monitored closely for clues about production potential.
Corn Erases Gain as Supplies May Be Ample Amid Planting Delay
Corn erased a gain in Chicago, heading for a third monthly drop, on speculation U.S. supplies will be ample even after wet weather reduced spring planting to the slowest pace since 1984.
The grain jumped the most in 10 months yesterday as the U.S. Department of Agriculture said only 5 percent of crops had been planted in the nation's main producing states, trailing the five-year average of 31 percent. The agency estimated March 28 U.S. farmers would plant 97.282 million acres, the most in 77 years, helping boost production to a record. The U.S. is the world's biggest corn exporter.
Reduced planting progress "is not enough to compensate for the longer-term outlook of rising production and lackluster demand," Credit Suisse Group AG analysts including Tobias Merath in Zurich wrote today in an e-mailed report. "We expect lower prices for corn, both near- and long-term."
Corn for delivery in July was unchanged at $6.5975 a bushel at 7:38 a.m. on the Chicago Board of Trade, set for a 5.1 percent retreat in April. Prices earlier rose to $6.69, the highest for a most-active contract since April 1. Trading volume was more than double the prior 100-day average for that time of day. Corn surged by the exchange limit of 40 cents by yesterday's close, or 6.5 percent, the most since June 25.
Illinois, Iowa and Indiana probably will have the wettest April ever, according to T-Storm Weather LLC. Much of the upper Midwest, from Missouri to Michigan, had more than twice the normal rainfall in the past two weeks, National Weather Service data show. Rains will redevelop from about midweek in the Midwest, with heavy rainfall possible in Illinois, forecaster DTN said in a report.
The USDA said in February corn production in the country may rise to a record 14.53 billion bushels.
Wheat for delivery in July fell 1 percent to $7.09 a bushel, poised for a first monthly climb in three for the most- active contract. In Paris, milling wheat for delivery in November dropped 0.5 percent to 211 euros ($276) a metric ton on NYSE Liffe.
The USDA said yesterday 33 percent of the winter-wheat crop was in good or excellent condition, down from 35 percent a week earlier and 64 percent a year earlier. In India, the largest grower after China, the government will consider lowering the export price after failing to get any bids for 5 million tons to be shipped from state reserves, Food Minister K.V. Thomas said.
Soybeans for delivery in July rose 0.4 percent to $14.1425 a bushel in Chicago, set to gain in April after two months of declines. The oilseed touched $14.2375, the highest level since March 28.
Copper Declines for Second Day on U.S., China Demand Concerns
Copper dropped for a second straight session amid concern that lower-than-forecast growth in the U.S. and China, the world's biggest consumers of the metal, will damp demand. Zinc and lead retreated.
Slump in gold price releases years of pent-up retail demand
* As big investors rush out, consumers rush in
* World's biggest consumers India, China lead charge
* Premiums for gold bars at multi-month highs in Asia
* Some retailers report shortage of prompt supply
By Lewa Pardomuan
SINGAPORE, April 19 (Reuters) - Gold retailers struggled to cope this week as parents buying dowries, casual shoppers and tourists snapped up bars, coins, nuggets and jewellery as a slump in the price of the yellow metal released years of pent-up retail demand.
Gold Jumps, Trimming Weekly Loss, on Physical Demand in Asia
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