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Sunday, February 25, 2024

Copper on track for third straight weekly loss on China economic woes

LONDON: Copper prices in London were on track for a third straight weekly decline on Friday due to disappointing economic data from top consumer China and ongoing woes in its property sector.

Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange eased 0.1% to $8,224 per metric ton by 1052 GMT. The metal, used in power and construction, is down 0.8% so far this week.

“The outlook for industrial metals continues to deteriorate as concerns over China’s economy escalate. It’s a challenging environment for metals and more declines are likely as China keeps on disappointing,” said ING analyst Ewa Manthey.

China, the world’s second largest economy, is targeting 5% annual growth this year. After July economic activity data failed to match expectations, an increasing number of economists are warning that it could miss the goal unless Beijing ramps up support measures.

Copper hovers above seven-week low, zinc slumps

A strong U.S. currency, up for a fifth consecutive week amid China-related worries and bets that U.S. interest rates would stay high, was also adding pressure on dollar-priced metals by making them less attractive for buyers holding other currencies.

“Further U.S. rate hikes could add more headwinds to an already slow demand for metals,” Manthey said.

LME aluminium was flat at $2,145 a ton. China is the world’s biggest consumer of aluminium and also the biggest producer. In July, the country’s aluminium output rose to near-record levels and imports jumped 20% from a year earlier amid low ShFE stocks.

Zinc fell 0.6% to $2,284, lead eased 0.1% to $2,140, tin lost 0.8% to $25,110, and nickel declined 0.8% to $20,120.

Copper on track for third straight weekly loss on China economic woes

Source: Brecorder

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