Platinum and palladium slump on strike deal

6/12/2014 2:00 PM
By Associated Press

Platinum and palladium prices slumped on Thursday on news of a deal to end South Africa's long-running mining strike.

The price of platinum for delivery in July fell $39.80, or 2.7 percent, to $1,441.30 an ounce. September palladium fell $40.75, or 4.7 percent, to $819.40.

The strike for higher wages started in January and concern about supplies has supported the prices of both metals this year. South Africa is a major producer of platinum and palladium, which are used in the medical, electronics and auto industries.

"With the mining strike being settled, the takes a great deal of risk premium out of the market," said Sterling Smith, a commodities strategist at Citigroup.

In other metals trading, gold and silver rose, but copper edged lower.

The price of gold for delivery in August rose $12.80, or 1 percent, to $1,274. Silver for July gained 36.1 cents, or 1.9 percent, to $19.53 an ounce. Copper for the same month fell 2.5 cents, or 0.8 percent, to $3.02 per pound.

In energy trading, the price of oil climbed to its highest level in almost nine months as an insurgency in Iraq raised the risk of disruptions to supplies.

Crude oil for July rose $2.13, or 2 percent, to $106.53 a barrel, its highest price since September.

In other energy trading, wholesale gasoline rose 8 cents, or 2.9 percent, to $3.08 a gallon. Natural gas for July climbed 25.4 cents, or 5.6 percent, to $4.76 per 1,000 cubic feet. Heating oil rose 8.5 cents, or 2.9 percent, to $2.99 a gallon.

In trading of agricultural products, soy beans for delivery in July fell 30 cents, or 2.1 percent, to $14.15 a bushel. Wheat for the same month dropped 4 cents, or 0.7 percent, to $5.85 a bushel. Corn for the same month rose 3 cents, or 0.7 percent, to $4.40 a bushel.


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10/23/2014 | Last Updated: 2:45 PM