The Standard & Poor’s GSCI spot index of 24 raw materials dropped 2.6 percent to 730.41 by 12:19 p.m. in New York, a second consecutive decline, as crude oil futures retreated in the biggest two-day drop in 11 months. Wheat headed for the biggest slide in four weeks in Chicago and lead fell 4.1 percent in London.
Japan was hit by two earthquakes stronger than magnitude-6 today and the government raised the severity rating of its nuclear crisis to the highest level, matching the 1986 Chernobyl disaster. The International Energy Agency warned that oil above $100 is starting to hurt the global economy, while yesterday the International Monetary Fund lowered its forecast for U.S. and Japanese growth this year. U.S. and European equities fell.
“There continues to be concern about what this is doing to the economy, with particular focus on the situation in Japan,” said John Kilduff, a partner at Again Capital LLC, a New York- based hedge fund that focuses on energy.
Crude for May settlement fell $3.82, or 3.5 percent, to $106.10 a barrel:
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