Energy prices were rising Thursday on hopes that an improving global economy will boost demand for petroleum products, but precious metals were losing some of their crisis-fighting attractiveness owing to the same expectations of a recovery.
Crude oil for May delivery recently was up $3.46 at $51.85 a barrel, and reformulated gasoline was adding 8 cents to $1.46 a gallon. Heating oil was also up 8 cents, at $1.43 a gallon, while natural gas was fractionally better at $3.70 per million British thermal units.
Gold and silver, meanwhile, were tumbling. Gold was recently down $23.20 at $904.50 an ounce, and silver was losing 19 cents to $12.79 an ounce. Copper was up 4 cents at $1.89 a pound.
Agricultural futures were stronger across the board, led by wheat, soybeans, cocoa and sugar. Lean hogs and cattle were also advancing.
The Reuters/Jefferies CRB Index was higher by 5.51 points at 223.32.
In the foreign-exchange market, the dollar was plunging against most of its major counterparts, and both the euro and the pound rose roughly 2% on the greenback. The yen, however, was weaker.
As for commodity-related stocks,
was up 3.9% at $70.98, and
was adding 2.2% at $70.72.
Gold miners were falling.
was down 6.7% at $53.97,
was off 3.8% at $8.79, and
was losing 4.5% to $32.37.
Among exchange-traded funds, the
was climbing 7.9% to $30.84, and the
was dropping 2.2% to $88.99.
Market Vectors Agribusiness
was better by 4.2% at $30.33.
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