Copper Rises on China Demand Speculation, Producers’ Struggles
China’s government signaled a commitment to growth for the second time in four days. A measure of Chinese copper use was at the second-highest on record in April, Max Layton, a Goldman Sachs Group Inc. analyst, said in a report. Mine output at Codelco, the largest producer, fell 10 percent in the first quarter because of lower ore grades. The Standard & Poor’s GSCI Spot Index of 24 raw materials rose for the first time in three days.
“We’re seeing a respite from selling across the board,” Matthew Zeman, a strategist at Kingsview Financial in Chicago, said in a telephone interview. “The thinking is that China will continue to ease, and that’s helping buoy markets. Output and inventory issues are also going to help keep a floor under copper prices.”
Copper futures for July delivery rose 1 percent to settle at $3.4285 a pound at 1:11 p.m. on the Comex in New York. Yesterday, prices slid 2.6 percent, the most since April 4.
China’s leaders pledged to intensify “fine-tuning” of policies, indicating a commitment to growth as domestic demand slows and the euro-area debt crisis escalates. Manufacturing in the country may shrink for a seventh month in May, a private survey showed, reinforcing the need for stimulus.
On the LME, copper for delivery in three months rose 1 percent to $7,610 a metric ton ($3.45 a pound).
Nickel, aluminum, zinc, tin and lead rose in London.
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