NEW YORK (AP) -- Commodities prices mostly rose in quiet trading Monday, led by metals and energy contracts. Soybeans continued to retreat on concerns about oversupply.
Investors were wading cautiously back into riskier assets after a pullback late last week. A modest decline in the dollar also helped support commodities prices.
A weaker dollar makes commodities more attractive to foreign investors. The ICE Futures US dollar index, which measures the dollar against six other currencies, fell 0.1 percent.
Gold for February delivery rose $6.00 to settle at $1,095.70 an ounce. Silver for March delivery rose 21.3 cents to $17.145 an ounce. March copper rose 4.6 cents to $3.393 a pound.
Benchmark crude for March delivery rose 72 cents to settle at $75.26 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
In other Nymex trading in February contracts, heating oil gained 2.42 cents to settle at $1.9658 a gallon, gasoline added 3.51 cents to settle at $2.0008 a gallon. Natural gas futures lost 9.7 cents to settle at $5.722 per 1,000 cubic feet.
Financial markets were spooked last week when President Barack Obama announced proposals that would limit trading by big financial institutions and prevent further consolidation in the industry. That sent investors rushing into safe investments like the dollar and government debt and out of risker assets like stocks and commodities.
Richard Feltes, senior vice president and director of commodity research at MF Global, said the commodities market could be hurt by a renewed push for tighter regulation since large financial institutions often trade in basic materials. That could mean some big players exiting the market, which would result in fewer buyers and more supply in commodities contracts.
Soybeans continued to fall. Feltes said South America's production could hit record levels, which would add to an already abundant supply. Concerns about excess supply in recent weeks has pressured soybeans as well as wheat and corn.
Soybeans for March delivery fell 11 cents to $9.405 a bushel. They are down 11.3 percent since closing at a 2010 high of $10.61 a bushel on Jan. 5.
Wheat dropped 0.25 cents to $4.9825 a bushel. Corn rose 3 cents to $3.6775 a bushel.
In other trading, cocoa, cotton and pork bellies fell, while frozen orange juice concentrate and sugar rose.
Copyright 2010 The AP.