Copper futures rose to a nine-week high amid signs of rebounding economies in Europe and the U.S., the world’s second-biggest consumer of the metal.
Industrial production in the 17 nations that use the euro gained in June for the fourth month in five, European Union data show. The U.S. reported today that retail sales climbed for a fourth straight month in July. Concern that slowing growth would curb demand, especially from top user China, sent copper prices down 15 percent this year through July. Since then, futures have rallied 6.4 percent.
“Europe is showing signs that the economy is on the mend,” David Meger, the director of metal trading at Vision Financial Markets in Chicago, said in a telephone interview. “Copper is trying to find a floor for itself.”
Copper futures for delivery in September rose 0.4 percent to settle at $3.317 a pound at 1:15 p.m. on the Comex in New York, after earlier climbing to $3.343, the highest for a most-active contract since June 7. Prices gained 4.2 percent last week, the most since September.
Futures also advanced as money managers bought the metal to close out bets on falling prices, according to Newedge Group SA.
On the London Metal Exchange, copper for delivery in three months added 0.3 percent to $7,275 a metric ton ($3.30 a pound). Stockpiles monitored by the LME fell for a 20th session to 589,725 tons, the lowest since April 10. Orders to remove the metal from warehouses rose 0.8 percent to 314,250 tons.
Nickel rose, while aluminum, zinc, lead and tin fell.
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