Report Drives Soybean Prices Near 4-Year Low

(AP) -

Soybean contracts sank to their lowest price in almost four years after a government report bolstered expectations for ample supplies.

In a report out Friday, the U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates that this season’s soybean harvest could reach a record 3.8 billion bushels, which is 165 million bushels higher than its estimate last month.

Soybeans sank 18 cents, or 1.6 percent, to $10.75 a bushel. That’s the lowest settlement price for soybeans since October 2010, according to the data provider FactSet.

The USDA’s report also projected big harvests and stockpiles of corn and wheat.

Corn slipped 8 cents, or 2 percent, to $3.85 a bushel; while wheat lost 23 cents, or 4.1 percent, to $5.26 a bushel.

In precious-metals trading, gold and silver fell, as worries over Europe’s banking system eased.

Gold for August delivery slipped $1.80 to settle at $1,337.40 an ounce, while silver for September lost 5 cents to $21.46 an ounce. Both metals ended the week with gains of more than 1 percent.

Industrial metals were mixed. Copper was unchanged at $3.27 a pound. Platinum fell $3.20 to $1,513.80 an ounce, and palladium rose $1.70 to $875.30 an ounce.