Commodities, which have been rallying since the Federal Reserve's midweek announcement that new money will be put into the economy, were fairly subdued Friday, and energy futures and precious metals were close to the flat line. Recently, crude oil for April delivery was down 46 cents at $51.15 a barrel at the New York Mercantile Exchange. Reformulated gasoline was up almost 1 cent to $1.44 a gallon, and heating oil was tacking on a penny at $1.37 a gallon. Natural gas was higher by almost 7 cents at $4.24 per million British thermal units.
Gold was up $1.20 at $957.40 an ounce, and silver was off 6 cents at $13.79 an ounce. Copper was fractionally weaker at $1.79 a pound. Platinum and palladium were little changed. Cocoa, cotton, frozen concentrated orange juice and soybeans were positive, while wheat and corn fell. Cattle and lean hogs decreased. The dollar was rallying. The euro fell to $1.3556 from $1.3660 a day ago, and the yen dropped to 95.81 from 94.48. The pound was at $1.4432, down from $1.4506 previously. Among commodity-related stocks, Exxon Mobil ( XOM) was losing 1.3% to $67.45, and Chevron ( CVX) was slipping 1.9% to $65.84.