Energy Futures Mixed

TIM EVANS, Pegasus Econometrics, New York (2:25 p.m. EDT): June gasoline and heating oil contracts are rising late in the afternoon before contracts expire... gasoline is up 6% from its earlier low following API and DOE reports that showed large inventory increases... one talking point behind the afternoon rally is the U.N. Security Council debate on extending the Iraqi oil-for-food agreement... Iraqi minister is opposed to the U.K. and U.S. plan to lift restrictions on civilian trade, but clamp down on military goods sales... Russians say they need time.

Precious Metals Mostly Lower

WILLIAM O'NEILL, Merrill Lynch, New York (2:15 p.m. EDT ): Gold is trading at the $265.20 support level after an earlier short covering bounce fizzled... futures plunged through the $272 level Wednesday...believe fund selling has pretty much ended... but weak euro and the sliding Australian dollar is putting pressure on metal... if gold fails to hold at the current level, it could fall to the $250-$254 area... Silver is off at $4.41... Platinum is down to $603 and palladium is down to $642.