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Coffee futures fall for a ninth straight day

October 25, 2013

NEW YORK (AP) — Coffee prices fell for the ninth day in a row on Friday, the longest losing streak in more than 11 years.

Arabica coffee for December delivery fell 1.2 cents, or 1.1 percent, to $1.091 a pound in New York. That’s the lowest price since March 2009.

Heavy rains in Brazil, the world’s largest producer of coffee, should result in another good harvest in 2014, said Sterling Smith, a commodities specialist with Citigroup.

Coffee prices have been steadily declining for two and half years, due to strong harvests in Brazil. The good harvests have created a glut of supply, which pushed down prices.

The amount of unroasted coffee in storage in the U.S. was at 5.446 million 60-kilogram bags in September, according to Green Coffee Association, an industry trade group. While that’s down slightly from August, coffee stocks remain at a four-year high.

With these pressures, Smith said coffee prices could fall to $1 a pound. That’s good news for Americans, who are by far the world’s largest consumers of coffee.

In other agricultural commodities, December wheat prices were down 5.75 cents, or 0.8 percent, to $6.9075 a bushel. December corn prices fell less than a cent to $4.40 a bushel and November soybeans prices fell 9.75 cents, or 0.7 percent, to $13 a bushel.

This is expected to be a large harvest weekend for U.S. farmers. Those forecasts have pushed corn, wheat and soybean prices lower, Smith said.

Metal prices were mixed. Gold for December delivery rose $2.20, or 0.2 percent, to $1,352.50 an ounce. Silver prices fell 18.3 cents, or 0.8 percent, to $22.64 an ounce.

High-grade copper prices rose less than a cent to $3.269 a pound. Platinum prices were basically flat, falling 70 cents to $1,455.50 an ounce. December palladium prices were also flat, rising 10 cents to $747.90 an ounce.

Energy prices were also mixed. Crude oil rose 74 cents to $97.85 a barrel in New York. Natural gas rose 7.8 cents to $3.71 per thousand cubic feet. Heating oil rose a penny to $2.91 a gallon and wholesale gasoline was down less than a penny to $2.587 a gallon.