With a rebound in U.S. stocks in the cards, crude soared to another record close while gold futures clung to meager gains. Starting with crude, the April contract hit an overnight record high of $109.72 per barrel, as the U.S. dollar hit a new low against the euro. In Tuesday's trading, crude fell back from its overnight highs, but still managed to gain 82 cents to close at $108.72 per barrel. Gains were mitigated by a rising U.S. dollar, which was bolstered by the Federal Reserve's expanded securities lending program designed to promote liquidity.
Crude-related stocks were taking advantage of both the strength in oil prices and the resurgence of the U.S. equity market. The CBOE Oil Index (OIX) rose 3.89%, while the AMEX Oil & Gas Index (XOI) was last seen higher by 4%. Within the XOI, Occidental Petroleum surged nearly 7% following yesterday's hydrocarbon-related investment pact with Abu Dhabi.
The strength in the U.S. dollar was a downer for gold futures, as the malleable metal gained $4.20 to close at $976 an ounce. Gold's close was about $11.80 below its intraday high of $987.80, set earlier in the session. Silver prices weren't quite as resilient as gold, as the May contract dropped 2.2 cents to finish at $19.76 an ounce.
Gold-related stocks largely ignored the fate of metals trading, as the buying mood on Wall Street took hold. Against this backdrop, the AMEX Gold BUGS Index (HUI) added 3.77%, and the CBOE Gold Index (GOX) jumped 3.97%. Within the HUI, Hecla Mining soared nearly 7% after being reiterated at outperform by BMO Capital Markets.