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Crude oil closes above $100 a barrel; Gold flat

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December 27, 2013 04:20 PM EST | AP

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NEW YORK (AP) — The price of crude oil edged above $100 a barrel Friday and gold futures inched higher. Agricultural futures also rose.

Benchmark U.S. crude oil rose 77 cents, or 0.8 percent, to settle at $100.32 a barrel in New York.

Oil has gained 8 percent this month as optimism builds about the U.S. economic recovery and the prospect of greater demand for energy. Violence in South Sudan has also stoked concerns about the African nation's oil production.

Oil last closed above $100 a barrel on Oct. 18.

In other energy trading, wholesale gasoline was down 0.4 cent to $2.82 a gallon, heating oil was rose 3 cents to $3.12 per gallon and natural gas lost 3 cents to $4.41 per 1,000 cubic feet.

Gold for February delivery edged up $1.70, or 0.1 percent, to $1,214 an ounce. Silver rose 13.3 cents, or 0.7 percent, to $20.049 an ounce.

In other metals trading, March copper fell 1.35 cents, or 0.4 percent, to $3.385 a pound. March palladium rose $11.20, or 1.6 percent, to $711.95 an ounce and April platinum rose $15.10, or 1.1 percent, to $1,378.90 an ounce.

Crop prices rose. Corn for March delivery added 1.25 cents, or 0.3 percent, to $4.275 a bushel, March soybeans rose 8.5 cents, or 0.7 percent, to $13.1375 a bushel. March wheat rose 3 cents, or 0.5 percent, to $6.09 a bushel.