LONDON (AFP) - Oil jumped briefly back above 120 dollars per barrel this week before turning lower in choppy trade that was driven by US storm worries and tensions between Russia and the West, traders said. Precious metal gold benefited from its safe-haven status as investors sought to shelter their cash amid sharp exchanges between Washington and Moscow over the Russian intervention in Georgia. Most base metals, including aluminium, copper and tin, suffered losses on widespread concern that slowing economic growth could sap demand. OIL: New York crude oil prices stretched as high as 120.50 dollars per barrel on Thursday as traders eyed stormy weather in the Gulf of Mexico, where many US energy facilities are located. After breaching 120 dollars, prices closed sharply lower as traders discounted the threat of Tropical Storm Gustav. But they moved higher again on Friday ahead of a three-day holiday weekend in the United States. About a quarter of US crude oil installations are located in the Gulf of Mexico. "The focus is likely to remain on Tropical Storm Gustav and potential supply disruptions during the weekend and earlier next week," said Sucden analyst Andrey Kryuchenkov. Majors BP and Shell, and US rival ConocoPhillips on Thursday evacuated workers from their installations in the Gulf of Mexico. The threat of Gustav raised grim memories of the 2005 hurricanes Katrina and Rita that damaged or destroyed about 165 oil platforms of the some 4,000 located in the Gulf. Oil markets this week also tracked escalating tensions between Georgia and Russia, the world's biggest oil producer. The United States, the largest energy consumer, is worried that in the wake of the Russian-Georgian conflict, US strategic interests in Ukraine and Azerbaijan " especially in oil " could be at serious risk. The clearest sign of US concern is that Vice President Dick Cheney next week will travel to Georgia, Ukraine and Azerbaijan, analysts said. Despite climbing above 120 dollars, prices are still well short of record highs above 147 dollars reached in July. Analysts say that a struggling US economy has curbed demand for oil. By Friday, New York's main oil futures contract, light sweet crude for delivery in October was at 117.41 dollars, down from 119.48 dollars a week earlier. Brent North Sea crude for October stood at 115.65 dollars, down from 118.51 dollars. PRECIOUS METALS: Gold climbed above 830 dollars an ounce. "With the US and Russia still at logger-heads over Georgia, and credit market issues continuing to send jitters through the financial markets, gold remains an attractive choice to longer-term investors looking to factor in some safe-haven protection," said Bullion Desk analyst James Moore. On the London Bullion Market, gold rose to 833 dollars per ounce at Friday's late fixing from 824 dollars a week earlier. Silver increased to 13.78 dollars per ounce from 13.62 dollars. On the London Platinum and Palladium Market, platinum advanced to 1,479 dollars per ounce at the late fixing on Friday from 1,427 dollars. BASE METALS: Base metals mainly fell on demand concerns. "Apart from lead, the base metals struggled, which points to further consolidation in the near term," said BaseMetals analyst William Adams. By Friday, copper for delivery in three months fell to 7,509 dollars per tonne on the London Metal Exchange from 7,710 dollars a week earlier. Three-month aluminium slipped to 2,714 dollars per tonne from 2,800 dollars. Three-month lead advanced to 1,975 dollars per tonne from 1,887 dollars.Three-month zinc dipped to 1,812 dollars per tonne from 1,830 dollars. Three-month tin receded to 20,000 dollars per tonne from 21,400 dollars. COFFEE: Coffee prices continued to rise. By Friday on LIFFE, London's futures exchange, Robusta for November delivery rallied to 2,331 dollars per tonne from 2,303 dollars a week earlier. On the New York Board of Trade (NYBOT), Arabica for December delivery rose to 148.75 US cents per pound from 143.15 cents. COCOA: Cocoa prices gained ground as investment funds snapped up the commodity. "The move was largely fund buying dominated," said Sucden analyst Ryan Bennett. By Friday on LIFFE, the price of cocoa for December climbed to 1,650 pounds per tonne from 1,572 pounds a week earlier. SUGAR: Sugar prices rose in London but dipped in New York. "Further strength in the oil market, amid concerns that tropical storm Gustav will disrupt oil and gas production in the Gulf of Mexico this weekend, led to a boost," said analysts at sugar broker Czarnikow. Sugar is used in the production of ethanol, a cheaper alternative to motor fuel that is refined from crude oil. By Friday on LIFFE, the price per tonne of white sugar for October delivery increased to 408 pounds from 401.20 pounds the previous week. GRAINS AND SOYA: Grains and soya prices were subdued amid persistent weather concerns in the US Midwest. By Friday on the Chicago Board of Trade, maize for December delivery was lower at 5.90 dollars per bushel from 6.06 dollars the previous week. November-dated soyabean meal " used in animal feed " was flat at 13.27 dollars. Wheat for December delivery fell to 8.08 dollars per bushel from 8.90 dollars. RUBBER: Malaysian rubber prices increased. On Friday, the Malaysian Rubber Board's benchmark SMR20 rose to 288.10 US cents per kilo from 283.90 US cents per kilo a week ago.