Commodities’ prices plunged down as signs of a faltering U.S. economy and escalating debt woes in Europe signaled less demand for energy and metals.
The Standard & Poor’s GSCI Spot Index of 24 raw materials declined 2.2 percent to 606.48 at 11:52 a.m. in New York. A close at that level would mark the biggest decline since June 21.
Crude oil and gold have been losers of the week a week, and industrial metals including lead, aluminum and copper slumped. Employers in the U.S. hired fewer workers than forecast in June, indicting the labor market is making little progress toward reducing joblessness, government data showed today. Global equities extended losses, and Spain’s 10-year bond yields reached 7 percent as industrial production fell for the ninth straight month. The dollarrallied, eroding the appeal of raw materials. Through yesterday, the GSCI index dropped 3.8 percent this year, led by declines in cotton, coffee and oil. The MSCI All-Country World Index gained 4.9 percent, and Treasuries returned 1.8 percent, a Bank of America Corp. index showed. Wheat, corn and soybeans headed for the first losses in a week. Grains had surged as a heat wave in the U.S. Midwest eroded prospects for crops.