Commodities dive on weak economic signals

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Associated Press

Posted on April 3, 2013 at 1:01 PM

Updated Wednesday, Apr 3 at 1:02 PM

Commodities are settling sharply lower after weak economic data suggested that demand might wane for fuel and industrial metals.

A private report on hiring released Wednesday showed that U.S. companies added fewer jobs in March compared with the previous month as construction firms held off on hiring after three months of solid gains.

Official figures from the 17 European countries that use the euro showed inflation falling in March to its lowest level in nearly three years. On Tuesday Europe's statistics agency reported that unemployment in the eurozone hit 12 percent, a record.

Agricultural commodities, metals and energy contracts all lost ground. Oil had its biggest one-day drop since November, as supplies in the U.S. reached the highest level since 1990. Gold fell $22.30 to $1,552.80 an ounce.

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