Copper dropped for a third day on mounting tensions in Syria before a report that may show the U.S. economy grew more than previously estimated, adding to the case for the Federal Reserve to taper stimulus.
The metal for delivery in three months on the London Metal Exchange sank as much as 0.6 percent to at $7,243.50 a metric ton and traded at $7,265.25 at 11:41 a.m. in Tokyo. The price is up 5.6 percent this month, set for the best month since September.
Investors are watching the Middle East after the U.S. and the U.K. said yesterday they were ready to lead a military strike against Syria without United Nations approval. U.S. gross domestic product probably grew 2.2 percent in the second quarter, up from the government’s earlier estimate of 1.7 percent, a Bloomberg survey of economists shows.
“People are watching developments in Syria as the market lacks upside momentum,” said Wu Jianguo, an analyst at Maike Futures Brokerage in Shanghai.
The Fed may pare its $85 billion a month in bond purchases at its Sept. 17-18 meeting, according to 65 percent of economists surveyed by Bloomberg Aug. 9-13. Fed Chairman Ben S. Bernanke has signaled the prospect of cuts to stimulus should the economy and job market continue to improve.
Copper for delivery in December on the Shanghai Futures Exchange declined 0.3 percent to 52,200 yuan ($8,528) a ton. The contract for delivery in December fell 0.2 percent at $3.305 a pound on the Comex in New York.
On the LME, zinc also dropped, while aluminum, lead and tin were little changed. Nickel climbed.
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