Gold prices have only continued to gain as investors look to hedge possible inflation and a weak dollar. The run has had a nice side effect, too: it’s boosted the prices of other metals and given their related exchange traded funds (ETFs) a lift.

Reasons for gold’s climb to record prices haven’t changed: a weaker dollar, inflation worries and mixed investor sentiment seem to rule the markets lately. But as gold marches forward, other metals have hitched a ride on its coattails. Platinum and palladium have hit 12-month highs, and analysts think it could continue if gold remains strong. (Copper should also enjoy higher prices despite the overstock supply).

Devon Maylie for The Wall Street Journal reports that platinum and palladium are both industrial and precious metals. As a result, they’re benefiting from hedging as well as hopes that industrial activity will take off in 2010. (Learn about the “other” metals). Silver, another precious metal with industrial applications, has also been gaining strength, handily outperforming gold year-to-date. (Six benefits of silver investing).

Copper prices have also rallied to a 13-month high on a sliding dollar and Japan’s economic expansion. Copper made up 54% of the total value of Chile’s exports last month, up from 42% the same time last year, reports Drew Benson for Bloomberg.

Spot gold hit a record high of $1,134.55 a troy ounce Monday, building on the gains it has posted over the past weeks.

For more stories about commodity ETFs, visit our commodity ETFs category.

If you don’t want gold, where can you look? Among the growing number of options include:

  • iShares Silver Trust (NYSEArca: SLV): up 53.1% year-to-date

  • E-TRACS UBS Long Platinum ETN (NYSEArca: PTM): up 47.6% year-to-date
  • ETFS Physical Silver Shares (NYSEArca: SIVR): up 15.9% in the last three months

  • iPath DJ AIG Copper TR Sub-Index ETN (NYSEArca: JJC): up 109.3% year-to-date

The opinions and forecasts expressed herein are solely those of Tom Lydon, and may not actually come to pass. Information on this site should not be used or construed as an offer to sell, a solicitation of an offer to buy, or a recommendation for any product.