Raw material prices endured a mixed week as investors tracked the outlook for global economic growth and the Ebola virus outbreak.
OIL: Oil prices headed back towards multi-month low points in volatile trading, pressured by a crude oversupply and weak demand from slowing world economies.
Futures though won brief strong gains on Thursday, "supported by the announcement that Saudi Arabia supplied less crude oil to the market in September", noted Dorian Lucas, an analyst at energy consultancy Inenco.
Prices were buoyed also by better-than-expected economic data from China and European powerhouse Germany.
While the German and eurozone PMI are encouraging, analysts said they would wait for data in the next few months to make firm conclusions on its growth path.
"So far, it seems quite good but we still need to look at the next few releases," Daniel Ang, investment analyst at Phillip Futures in Singapore, told AFP.
WTI has fallen to two-year lows and Brent to its lowest levels in four years during October, pressured by a crude oversupply and weak demand from slowing world economies.
Other analysts said investors were closely watching also the impact of the Ebola virus health risk on global economies."Fresh concern over Ebola is really the last thing we like to see right now, which may have an overhang effect on oil demand," said Desmond Chua, market analyst at CMC Markets.
A doctor who recently returned to New York after treating Ebola patients in Guinea tested positive on Thursday for the deadly virus, the first confirmed case in the city, officials said.
By Friday on London's Intercontinental Exchange, Brent North Sea crude for delivery in December slipped to $86.03 a barrel from $86.20 one week earlier.
On the New York Mercantile Exchange, West Texas Intermediate or light sweet crude for December recoiled to $81.38 a barrel compared with $83.27 for the expired November contract a week earlier.
- Gold spikes -
PRECIOUS METALS: Gold prices hit five-week highs on Tuesday before succumbing to profit-taking.Gold reached $1,255.37 an ounce, the highest level since mid-September, benefiting from its status as a haven investment during times of economic turbulence.
"Gold, and to a lesser extent silver, ran into profit taking following a couple of weeks of buying," said Saxo Bank analyst Ole Hansen.
"The bounce in stock markets, coupled with a somewhat stronger dollar, attracted some renewed selling."
By late Friday on the London Bullion Market, the price of gold had eased to $1,232.75 an ounce from $1,234.25 a week earlier.
Silver slid to $17.19 an ounce from $17.36.
On the London Platinum and Palladium Market, platinum slipped to $1,254 an ounce from $1,259.
Palladium rallied to $784 an ounce from $753.
BASE METALS: Base or industrial metal prices mainly rose thanks to events in China.
"China managed to brighten the mood on the metal markets," analysts at Commerzbank said in a note to clients.
Reports at the start of the week said China's central bank plans to inject 200 billion yuan ($32.6 billion) into the banking system after a recent spate of monetary easing failed to kickstart the Asian economic giant.
China's manufacturing growth meanwhile accelerated to a three-month high in October but domestic and foreign demand were tepid, HSBC said Thursday, calling for further policy support to boost the world's second-largest economy.
And while China's gross domestic product (GDP) expanded in the third quarter at its slowest pace since the depths of the global financial crisis, analysts said that the world's second-largest economy may have bottomed out.
By Friday on the London Metal Exchange, copper for delivery in three months grew to $6,724 a tonne from $6,615 a week earlier.
Three-month aluminium increased to $1,971 a tonne from $1,962.
Three-month lead fell to $2,015 a tonne from $2,030.
Three-month tin edged up to $19,427 a tonne from $19,426.
Three-month nickel slid to $15,174 a tonne from $15,648.
Three-month zinc increased to $2,265.25 a tonne from $2,245.75.
- Ebola scare -
COFFEE: The market recoiled to one-month lows on the back of favourable weather for growing conditions in top producer Brazil.
Prices sank as low as 189.30 US cents in New York and $2,005 in London.
"Futures markets were lower on forecasts for rains to appear this weekend in coffee areas of Brazil," said Jack Scoville, analyst at brokers Price Futures Group.By Friday on ICE Futures US, Arabica for delivery in December dipped to 192.10 US cents a pound from 213.20 cents a week earlier.
On LIFFE, London's futures exchange, Robusta for November slid to $2,019 a tonne from $2,152 a week earlier.
COCOA: Prices pulled lower but traders remained nervous over the possible impact of the Ebola outbreak in west Africa.
Cocoa futures had soared in September to 3.5-year peaks on worries that Ebola could hit output in Ivory Coast and Ghana -- the two biggest producers which account for 60 percent of the world's cocoa.
However now "the market seems to have little reason to go up as West Africa prepares and starts to harvest what could be a big crop", said Scoville.
By Friday on LIFFE, cocoa for delivery in December eased to £2,027 a tonne from £2,038 a week earlier.
On the ICE Futures US exchange, cocoa for December reversed to $3,114 a tonne from $3,119 a week earlier.
SUGAR: The sugar market receded.
By Friday on LIFFE, the price of a tonne of white sugar for delivery in December traded at $426.20 compared with $426.40 a week earlier.
On ICE Futures US, the price of unrefined sugar for March fell to 16.32 US cents a pound from 16.59 US cents a week earlier.
RUBBER: Kuala Lumpur rubber prices extended gains, hitting a six-week high, boosted by the Thai government's announcement it will help planters.
The Malaysian Rubber Board's benchmark SMR20 rose to 159.70 US cents a kilo on Friday, up from 149.90 US cents the previous week.