* China April trade data due on Wednesday
* Brent crude down to around $105 after nearing $106 earlier
* Copper consolidates early run to 3-week high
* Gold down as Australia cuts rates, ECB open to more easing
By Barani Krishnan
NEW YORK, May 7 Oil prices fell on Tuesday after
initially rallying on hopes of another European rate cut and
copper hit three-week highs before consolidating as commodity
markets awaited crucial trade data from major raw-materials
Gold fell for a second straight session. Its appeal as an
alternative investment faded as U.S. stocks remained near
Monday's record highs on prospects of more central bank
stimulus. Australia cut rates to record lows on Tuesday,
shadowing last week's move by the European Central Bank, which
said it could trim rates again.
In other markets, natural gas fell to a one-month low
while corn struggled to rebound from its worst sell-off in
5 weeks in the previous session.
Activity in commodities was restrained somewhat by anxiety
over what China's preliminary trade data for April will show on
China's imports of crude oil, iron ore and soybeans are all
likely to have climbed for a second month, although copper
arrivals may ease slightly due to port strikes in top-exporter
Chile, traders said.
A Reuters poll, meanwhile, showed China's import growth for
April probably eased, suggesting the underlying momentum for
both the domestic and global economies remains tepid.
"The first quarter underperformance of Chinese growth has
put many investors on the sidelines," ANZ analysts said in a
note. "While we do expect Chinese demand to improve (this
quarter), the stronger seasonal demand profile may end up being
The 19-commodity Thomson Reuters-Jefferies CRB index
was down nearly half a percent by 11:30 a.m. EDT (1530
GMT) after losses in 14 of the 19 futures markets it tracked.
In crude oil, the benchmark Brent grade out of
Europe's North Sea was down 0.4 percent, hovering just above
$105 a barrel after heading toward $106 earlier.
Brent has rebounded more than $6 a barrel since falling
below $99 last Wednesday - its largest three-day rise since
August 2012. Traders said profit-taking could kick at this level
unless the global economy shows signs of strong growth.
Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange was
flat at just below $7,275 a tonne after running up to a 3
week-high of $7,374. Traders said the market gave up gains
mainly on concerns about Wednesday's trade data due from China,
the world's biggest buyer of copper and other base metals.
The spot price of gold fell 1.5 percent to around
$1,446 an ounce after soaring to a mid-April high of nearly
$1,488 on Friday.
Prices at 11:51 a.m. EDT (1551 GMT)
LAST NET PCT YTD
CHG CHG CHG
US crude 95.43 -0.74 -0.8% 3.9%
Brent crude 105.00 -0.46 -0.4% -5.5%
Natural gas 3.944 -0.067 -1.7% 17.7%
Gold 1448.26 -20.63 -1.4% -13.5%
US Copper 330.25 -0.80 -0.2% -9.6%
LME Copper 7277.00 7.00 0.1% -8.2%
Dollar 82.268 -0.047 -0.1% 7.2%
US corn 676.25 -2.50 -0.4% -3.2%
US soybeans 1457.50 13.00 0.9% 2.7%
US wheat 690.00 -3.00 -0.4% -11.3%
US Coffee 142.45 0.70 0.5% -0.9%
US Cocoa 2398.00 -4.00 -0.2% 7.2%
US Sugar 17.56 -0.25 -1.4% -10.0%
US silver 23.730 -0.225 -0.9% -21.5%
US platinum 1481.10 -26.60 -1.8% -3.7%
US palladium 681.40 -15.70 -2.3% -3.1%