Commodities Update — Gold prices at four-week low; Wheat, corn fall; Indonesia modifies palm oil policy
RIYADH: Gold hovered near a four-week low on Tuesday, as some bears looked to book profits, but prices remained largely pressured by a strong dollar and investors dumping bullion to cover for losses in other assets.
Amid prospects of aggressive monetary policy tightening, spot gold rose 0.4 percent to $1,825.97 per ounce, as of 0247 GMT, after falling to its lowest since May 19 at $1,810.90 earlier in the session.
US gold futures fell 0.2 percent to $1,827.80.
Silver edges up
Spot silver gained 0.5 percent to $21.16 per ounce, while platinum firmed 0.4 percent to $936.77.
Palladium rose 0.4 percent to $1,804.17.
Wheat, corn fall; soybean firm
Chicago corn and wheat futures lost ground on Tuesday, as concerns over rising inflation weighed on global markets and added pressure on the prices of agricultural products.
However, losses in wheat were limited by expectations of a sharp decline in Ukraine’s grain output following Russia’s invasion.
The most-active corn contract on the Chicago Board of Trade fell 0.3 percent to $7.66-3/4 a bushel, as of 0324 GMT, and wheat gave up 0.7 percent to $10.63-3/4 a bushel. Soybeans added 0.5 percent to $17.16 a bushel.
Indonesia modifies palm oil export policy
Indonesia on Tuesday issued regulations backing recently announced changes on a palm oil export tax policy, including cutting the maximum levy rate to accelerate shipments that have been slow to rebound after the ending of an export ban.
But the levy rate will be raised in August, according to the finance ministry regulations, sparking concerns from an industry group.
Indonesia, the world’s biggest palm oil exporter, allowed palm shipments to resume from May 23 following a three-week export ban designed to boost cooking oil stocks and keep runaway local prices in check.
Authorities have since launched an export acceleration program and tweaked tax rules after shipments were slow to restart amid confusion over procedural issues.
Details of Tuesday’s regulations were in line with previous announcements, including lowering the maximum levy rate for crude palm oil to $200 a ton from $375, effective until July 31.
Indonesian exporters pay a levy and an export tax on shipments and the government last week announced a hike in the maximum export tax to $288 per ton.
Overall, the combined ceiling for both the levy and tax would be reduced to $488 per ton from $575 per ton to boost exports.
The new rates apply to sales that are tied to the domestic distribution of cooking oil. The trade ministry recently bumped up the allocation for such exports to 2.25 million tons, from around 1 million previously.
(With input from Reuters)