LONDON, Aug 12 (AFP): Crude oil prices fell off record peaks this week as traders seized on news of a failed plan to blow up US-bound passenger planes that prompted expectations of a drop in demand for jet fuel.
Coffee prices struck the highest level for six and a half years and nickel forged a new record.
British police revealed Thursday that they had foiled a plot to wreak "mass murder" with simultaneous mid-air explosions, triggering heightened airline security measures and rattling global financial markets.
GOLD: The price of gold-which usually benefits from its safe-haven status in times in geopolitical instability-fell despite news of the foiled bomb attack.
According to analysts, the downward move was due to investors switching funds into US dollars amid plunging oil prices.
SILVER: Silver prices held firm in volatile trade.
Silver struck 12.69 dollars per ounce Thursday-the highest point since May 31 -- on news of the bomb plot, but has since pulled back slightly.
OIL: London's Brent crude oil hit a record of 78.64 dollars on Monday after British energy giant BP revealed it had begun to shut down Prudhoe Bay, the biggest oil field in the United States, due to a pipeline leak.
BP's decision over Prudhoe Bay shook the oil market because the field accounts for eight per cent of total US production.
In London, a barrel of Brent North Sea crude for delivery in September slumped to 75.43 dollars per barrel, from 76.39 dollars.
RUBBER: Rubber prices fell as rains receded in leading producing countries in Asia.
"The market responded to better availability of raw material due to more favorable weather conditions in Asia," said Corrie MacColl trader Rashid Ahmed.
COFFEE: Coffee prices struck levels last seen six and a half years ago in London on worries over tight supplies in major producer Vietnam.
On Thursday, Robusta quality coffee rose above 1,451 dollars per tonne-a level last reached in December 1999.
SUGAR: Sugar prices sank to 403.70 dollars in London Friday-the lowest point for five and a half months.
On LIFFE, the price of a tonne of white sugar for October delivery dropped to 407 dollars, from 432 dollars a week earlier.
SOYA: Grains and soya prices fell as favourable weather prompted forecasts of large harvests in the United States.
"The weather will remain the most important influence on the market," noted AG Edwards Victor Lespinasse.
On the Chicago Board of Trade, the price of wheat for September delivery fell to 3.77 US dollars per bushel Friday, from 4.00 dollars a week earlier.
COTTON: Cotton prices rose to their highest level for nearly two months, before losing steam as Chinese demand weakened.
On the New York Cotton Exchange (NYCE), the December contract stood at 55.85 US cents per pound Friday, from 56.75 US cents a week earlier.
WOOL: Wool prices steadied. The Australian Eastern index closed at 7.42 Australian dollars per kilo Thursday, from 7.41 the previous week.