Gabon postpones legislative elections citing lack of money
LIBREVILLE, Dec 3 Gabon has postponed legislative elections set for Dec. 27 until next July because of a lack of money, the interior ministry said in a statement on Saturday.
* CRB index up after 8-session skid; down 1.6 pct on week * German business morale lifts oil in Friday trade * Copper at 2-month lows on fresh worries over Europe banks (Updates with weekly values, closing prices) By Barani Krishnan NEW YORK, Feb 22 Oil prices rose on Friday after a strong reading for German business morale and coffee and sugar rallied too, helping a broad commodities index end up the first time in nine sessions. On a weekly basis, though, the Thomson Reuters-Jefferies CRB index had its biggest tumble in nearly four months after accounting for sharp losses from two sessions this week. The weekly slump came as copper prices plumbed two-month lows on fresh worries over Europe's banks despite the bullish German data that boosted oil. U.S. soybeans closed lower as players took profit on an early rally fueled by strong Chinese buying and a Brazil port strike that stalled grains shipments there. And while raw sugar and coffee's premium grade arabica rallied more than many other commodities, traders cautioned that excess supplies could weigh on their prices again. "The only thing that can drive prices higher from here would be maybe macro sentiment. We are not expecting this to come from fundamentals," Andrey Kryuchenkov, an analyst at Moscow's VTB Capital, said in a comment about sugar. After sliding steadily for eight sessions, the CRB settled up 0.2 percent. Twelve of the 19 markets tracked by the commodities bellwether rose, with natural gas, nickel, gasoline, raw sugar and arabica coffee gaining more than 1 percent each. For the week, CRB ended down 1.7 percent, its sharpest slide since the week ending Oct. 26. Commodity markets started 2013 strongly, with the CRB rising 3 percent in January on signs of better economic recovery in the United States, Europe and China. But uneven business and growth data in the past two weeks raised market jitters, forcing the CRB to close lower on Feb. 11 through Feb. 21. OIL TICKS UP WITH STOCKS In Friday's session, crude oil followed equity markets higher after data showed Germany's business morale grew at its fastest pace in over two years in February. Wall Street's key stocks index, the S&P500, was up 0.7 percent by 3.30 p.m. ET (2030GMT), rising for the first time in three sessions. Oil's benchmark Brent crude in London settled at $114.10, up 0.5 percent on the day and down 3 percent on the week. U.S. crude finished at $93.13, up 0.3 percent on the session and down 2.8 percent on the week. The selloff in oil earlier this week came after rumors on Wednesday that a commodities hedge fund was in trouble and liquidating positions. It accelerated on speculation the U.S. Federal Reserve may end its bond-buying program, which has provided liquidity to financial markets, sooner than previously thought. Copper slipped to its lowest level in 2 months and showed its biggest weekly loss in 14 months after the European Central Bank announced crisis loan repayments by euro zone banks at levels far below market expectations. Three-month copper in London closed at $7,805 a tonne, down from Thursday's close of $7,860. Copper, used in power and construction, fell 5 percent on the week for its biggest weekly fall since mid-December 2011. On Thursday, it suffered its biggest one-day slide of 2013. Prices at 3:23 p.m. EST (2023 GMT) LAST/ NET PCT YTD CLOSE CHG CHG CHG US crude 93.28 0.44 0.5% 1.6% Brent crude 114.20 0.68 0.6% 2.8% Natural gas 3.291 0.045 1.4% -1.8% US gold 1572.40 -5.80 -0.4% -6.2% Gold 1575.81 0.15 0.0% -5.9% US Copper 353.30 -2.00 -0.6% -3.3% LME Copper 7801.00 -60.00 -0.8% -1.6% Dollar 81.454 -0.007 0.0% 6.1% US corn 690.25 -0.50 -0.1% -1.1% US soybeans 1461.25 -26.50 -1.8% 3.0% US wheat 715.00 -6.25 -0.9% -8.1% US Coffee 143.10 1.35 1.0% -0.5% US Cocoa 2161.00 18.00 0.8% -3.4% US Sugar 18.24 0.12 0.7% -6.5% US silver 28.460 -0.239 -0.8% -5.8% US platinum 1607.40 -12.60 -0.8% 4.5% US palladium 735.30 1.70 0.2% 4.5% (Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe and David Gregorio)
DUBAI, Dec 3 A U.S. Senate vote to extend the Iran Sanctions Act (ISA) for 10 years shows the world that Washington cannot be relied upon to act on its commitments, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Saturday.
CANNON BALL, N.D., Dec 3 U.S. military veterans will meet with tribal leaders on Saturday as they continue to entrench themselves in a North Dakota camp where thousands of activists are protesting a multibillion-dollar pipeline project near a Native American reservation.