RIYADH: Gold prices fell on Wednesday to their lowest in more than a week, as an elevated US dollar and Treasury yields continued to weigh on demand for bullion.
Spot gold was down 0.3 percent at $1,944.06 per ounce, as of 0430 GMT, after hitting its lowest since April 11. US gold futures fell 0.7 percent to $1,944.80.
On Tuesday, prices had fallen up to 1.8 percent as a stronger dollar and rising Treasury yields overshadowed safe-haven inflows into the metal.
Silver falls, palladium up
Spot silver dipped 0.4 percent to $25.05 per ounce, while platinum eased 1.4 percent to $976.64.
Palladium gained 0.9 percent to $2,394.05 on Wednesday.
Corn near 10-year high
Chicago corn was largely unchanged on Wednesday and scaled near a decade-high in the previous session, as traders fretted over planting delays in the US and a lack of supplies from war-torn Ukraine.
The most-active corn contract was unmoved at $7.99-3/4 a bushel, as of 0422 GMT, but not far from its highest since September 2012 reached on Tuesday.
Soybeans gained 0.2 percent at $16.95 a bushel and wheat rose 0.3 percent to $11.11-3/4 a bushel.
China’s March alumina exports to Russia soar
Closeup view of alumina tubes (Shutterstock)
China’s alumina exports to Russia surged over 90 times in March from the same period a year earlier, customs data showed on Wednesday, as sanctions against Russia for its invasion of Ukraine cut off some of its traditional supplies.
In March, China shipped 9,949 tons of alumina to Russia, up from 104.5 tons the same month in 2021, according to the General Administration of Customs. Its total alumina exports last month soared 180 percent year-on-year to 12,955 tons.
The volume is still tiny compared with China’s monthly output of more than six million tons. But it came after Australia imposed an export ban on alumina and aluminum ores to Russia as part of Western-led sanctions against Moscow.
Analysts had expected Russia could source the ingredient from China, though challenges exist as China needs to fulfill its domestic demand first and may be worried about secondary sanctions from the West.
China’s March soybean imports from the US fall
A farmer holds harvested soybeans in his hands on his farm in Chesterfield Township, New Jersey. (Shutterstock)
China’s soybean imports from the US plunged in March from a year earlier, customs data showed on Wednesday, as poor margins curbed buying.
China, the world’s top importer of soybeans, brought in 3.37 million tons last month from the US, down from 7.18 million a year earlier, data from the General Administration of Customs showed.
The trend for the year in US shipments was lower, with imports during the first three months of 2022 falling 30 percent from a year earlier to 13.4 million tons, according to the data.
Last year’s imports were supported by Beijing's increased purchases of US farm goods, including soybeans, after an initial trade deal in January 2020 between the two countries.
US cargoes in March last year were further boosted as the rain slowed the harvest and exports from Brazil, China’s top supplier of the beans.
The data on Wednesday showed that soybean imports from Brazil in March were 2.87 million tons, up from 315,334 tons a year earlier.
China brought in 6.37 million tons of the oilseed from Brazil in the first quarter, up 370 percent from 1.35 million tons a year earlier.
(With inputs from Reuters)