Monday, October 22, 2007

Hope for the BEST and plan for the WORST (part 2)

Copper, Oil, Corn Lead Commodity Slide; Demand Growth May Slow

Copper, oil and corn led declines in commodities on speculation that U.S. credit-market losses will stunt economic growth and curb demand for raw materials.
Copper dropped to a five-week low, oil slipped from a record and corn fell the most in almost three weeks as equity markets plunged worldwide. The Group of Seven finance ministers and central bankers said the rising cost of credit will sink economic growth. The group represents about two-thirds of the $53 trillion world economy.
``America is going to go through at least one of its hidden recessions,'' Sean Corrigan, chief investment strategist at Diapason Commodities Management, said in an interview in London today. ``If you look at manufacturing and higher industry in America, it's in trouble.''
The UBS Bloomberg CMCI Index of 26 commodities dropped by the most in two weeks. The index fell 1.4 percent to 1,230.398, the biggest decline since Oct. 8. Before today, the index had jumped 19 percent and touched a record high 1,250.7118 on Oct. 19.
Slowing U.S. growth may continue to drive commodity prices lower, contributing to ``a potential commodity rout,'' said Ron Goodis, futures trading director at Equidex Brokerage Group Inc. in Closter, New Jersey. ``People have really gotten caught by surprise. We've got all the commodities in the red today.''
Industrial Metals
The price of industrial metals, which track economic growth, may fall the most of all the commodities, Goodis said.
``Copper could be hit very hard,'' Goodis said.
Copper futures for December delivery fell 6.25 cents, or 1.8 percent, to $3.489 a pound at 9:47 a.m. on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange, after dropping to $3.45 a pound, the lowest since Sept. 18.
Crude-oil futures for December delivery fell as much as 2.6 percent today to $84.73 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract reached a record $90.07 on Oct. 19.
Corn for December delivery fell 8.25 cents, or 2.2 percent, to $3.62 a bushel in overnight trading on the Chicago Board of Trade. A close at that price would be the biggest drop for a most-active contract since Oct. 2.

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