Commodities markets summary

A summary of trading in key commodities markets overseas:

ENERGY

US oil prices fell on expectations of another increase in the nation's inventories, suggesting tepid demand in the world's biggest crude consumer.

New York's main contract, West Texas Intermediate for May delivery, finished at $US102.13 a barrel, falling $US2.24 from Monday's close.

Brent North Sea crude for June settled at $US109.27 a barrel, down 68 US cents in London.

The New York market was under pressure as investors bet the Department of Energy's weekly report on US crude-oil supplies on Wednesday would show an increase of 2.4 million barrels, according to the consensus of analysts polled by Dow Jones Newswire.

PRECIOUS METALS

Gold prices fell to the lowest level in 10 weeks, as investors ignore tensions in Ukraine to focus on an improving US economy and falling Chinese demand for the precious metal.

Gold for June delivery, the most actively traded contract, on Tuesday fell $US7.40, or 0.6 per cent, to $US1,281.10 a troy ounce, the lowest settlement since February 10, on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Gold demand in China, the world's largest consumer of the precious metal, will likely stagnate this year, the World Gold Council has said.

Investors have also grown more convinced that the Federal Reserve will wind down its monthly bond-buying program before the end of the year on the back of a sustained US recovery.

BASE METALS

A surge in the price of nickel, driven by ongoing concerns regarding the global supply of the metal, has pushed base metals on the London Metal Exchange to close higher.

At the close of open-outcry trading in the British capital on Tuesday, LME 3-month nickel was up some 2.2 per cent at $18,325 per metric tonne. Earlier in the session, the metal hit $18,332 per tonne, its highest price for 14 months.

LME 3-month copper closed 0.3 per cent higher at $US6,669.50 per tonne, while aluminium closed 1.3 per cent higher at $US1,890 per tonne.

Copper prices were partially buoyed by data from China Monday, which showed imports of refined copper rising 48 per cent in March from a year earlier. China accounts for around 40 per cent of the world's copper consumption.

Market Data

  • Currencies
    Currencies
    NamePriceChange% Chg
    0.9285-0.008-0.85%
    AUDUSD=X
    0.5535-0.0031-0.56%
    AUDGBP=X
    0.6717-0.0067-0.99%
    AUDEUR=X
  • Commodities
    Commodities
    NamePriceChange% Chg