NEW YORK (AP) – Soybean prices tumbled Friday after the dollar continued its rally against the euro, giving investors more reasons to sell commodities that were bought as a hedge against inflation. Corn and wheat also fell sharply.

The dollar gained ground against the euro although the Labor Department issued a disappointing report on U.S. employment; more pessimism about the health of European economies supported the greenback. The 15-nation euro fell to $1.4266 in late New York trading Friday from $1.4331 late Thursday.

A stronger dollar dampens investors’ appetite for commodities, which are typically bought as safe-haven investments used to hedge against inflation and weakness in the U.S. currency.

Soybeans for November delivery fell 58 cents, or 4.7 percent, to settle at $11.77 a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade.

Other agriculture futures also fell sharply. Wheat for December delivery lost 25.5 cents to settle at $7.515 a bushel on the CBOT, while December corn fell 16 cents to $5.485 a bushel.

“Background macroeconomic worries about a world-wide slowdown are partially behind the big losses … not just in the grains but in commodities in general,” said Vic Lespinasse of Grainanalyst.com

In energy markets, oil prices fell to a five-month low Friday as a jump in the U.S. unemployment rate boosted beliefs that Americans will continue to cut back on driving and other energy use.

Light, sweet crude for October delivery fell $1.66 to settle at $106.23 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, its lowest settlement since early April.

Other energy futures also fell. Heating oil futures fell 4.09 cents to settle at $2.9828 a gallon on the Nymex, while gasoline prices dropped 5.43 cents to settle at $2.6861 a gallon.

In precious metals trading, gold prices fell for a fifth session as the stronger dollar fed selling.

Gold for December delivery fell 40 cents to settle at $802.80 an ounce on the Nymex, after earlier falling as low as $794.80 an ounce.

Other precious metals also traded lower.

December silver fell 61.5 cents to settle at $12.325 an ounce, while December copper fell 16.75 cents to settle at $3.0985 a pound.


Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.