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U.S. cocoa hits 7-week lows as speculators worry about supply after rainfall

U.S. cocoa hits 7-week lows as speculators worry about supply after rainfall

U.S. cocoa futures fell to seven-week lows Monday as beneficial rains falling over West African growing regions raised supply concerns among investors.
Most-active July cocoa on the New York Board of Trade settled down $24 at $1,798 a metric ton. The contract traded as low as $1,780 a metric ton.
"The weather seems to have improved" in West Africa, which has pushed prices down in recent sessions, said Jack Scoville, analyst and vice president of Price Futures Group in Chicago.
The Ivory Coast and Ghana account for 70 percent of the world's cocoa production.
The rains will lead to flowering of the main crop over the next few weeks, said DTN Meteorlogix, the weather service.
Arabica coffee futures for May closed down 0.85 cent at $1.0315 a pound, with July off 0.85 cent at $1.0615.
Futures on raw sugar in foreign ports for May settled down 0.11 cent at 9.24 cents a pound, with July off 0.10 cent at 9.10 cents.
June gold settled up $1.70 at $683.50 a troy ounce on the New York Mercantile Exchange. July silver was unchanged at $13.575 an ounce. July platinum settled up $5.40 at $1,298.40 an ounce, while June palladium dipped 45 cents to $374 an ounce.
Activity was subdued Monday as Japan was on holiday and ahead of May Day festivities in much of Europe, said Bernard Hunter, director of precious metals with Scotia Mocatta.
London afternoon gold traded at $677, down from $677.50 Friday.
The most-active July copper contract rose 2.40 cents to settle at $3.5565 per pound.
The June crude oil contract settled down 75 cents at $65.71 a barrel after trading as high as $66.65 a barrel.
May heating oil settled unchanged at $1.9135 a gallon. June heating oil settled down 1.79 cent at $1.8948 a gallon.
May gasoline settled up 0.792 cent at $2.4405 a gallon after rising as high as $2.4550 a gallon.
June natural gas settled up 3.2 cents at $7.863 per million British thermal units.
On the Chicago Board of Trade, corn futures ended lower in choppy trading. May corn settled 6.25 cents lower at $3.58 per bushel, July also fell 6.25 cents to $3.67.50 and December settled 3 cents lower to $3.64.50.
July soybeans settled 4.50 cents higher at $7.43 per bushel, and November soybeans finished 4.25 cents lower at $7.70.75.
July wheat ended 17 cents lower at $4.95.50 per bushel.