Crude oil for April delivery ended the first trading day of the week by settling at its highest point in nearly 30 months.
Oil settled at $105.44 a barrel, a gain of $1.02 from Friday, after peaking at $106.95 earlier in the session. Ongoing unrest and violence in Libya, coupled with fears that uprisings will flare up in Saudi Arabia and elsewhere in North Africa and the Middle East, provided momentum for the futures price. Forces loyal to Libyan ruler Moammar Gaddhafi targeted rebels in the key port city of Ras Lanouf Monday in yet another attempt to thwart the rebels' march toward Tripoli.
Oil bottomed out at $104.25 during Monday's session.
With natural gas prices recently hitting their lowest levels since November, investors apparently sensed a buying opportunity for the front-month contract. As a result, front-month natural gas surged 12 cents to settle at $3.93 per thousand cubic feet Monday.
April natural gas traded within a range from $3.73 to $3.88.
Gasoline fell by a nickel Monday to settle at $3.00 a gallon. The April contract fluctuated from $3.02 to $3.09.
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