For a collection of reasons, the world is experiencing a commodity boom. Oil is hovering around $100 a barrel, while gold and platinum are setting new records. That said, it is still questionable whether commodities are a good long-term investment. While they boom sometimes, there will also be times when a glut or changes in demand cause prices to plummet.
Looking at the trends from 1985 to present, you can see a sharp divergence in asset performance between different classes of investment. The average dollar invested in global real estate in 1985 would be about $7.50 today. An investment in stocks would have yielded about $6.50, while bond growth would have left you with about $4. Investing in a basket containing all traded commodities would have yielded a return of about $2.60, while investing in just oil would have yielded less than $2.00 (oil having seen sustained growth in price only since 1998 or 1999).
None of this is to say you can’t make a fortune trading commodities. It just suggests that if you want to put money away for a few decades, not think about it much, and live well off it later, investing in equities is the way to go. Given the costs of management versus the extra returns, it is probably best to invest in index tracking funds, but that’s an issue to comment on another time.