Copper climbed to a one-week high, extending two weeks of gains, after a report showed China’s new credit increased to a record last month, boosting demand prospects for industrial metals from the top user.
Copper for delivery in three months on the London Metal Exchange added as much as 0.6 percent to $7,194.75 a metric ton, the highest price since Feb. 6. Futures were at $7,174.25 by 11:15 a.m. in Tokyo. The industrial metal, used in wires and pipes, is up 1.6 percent this month. Nickel climbed for a second day, adding 0.6 percent to $14,340 a ton.
Chinese aggregate financing, the broadest measure of credit, was 2.58 trillion yuan ($425 billion), the People’s Bank of China said in a Feb. 15 statement. The data add to better-than-estimated trade numbers, suggesting that China can limit the scale of any slowdown, and contrast with a central bank call last month for lenders to control surging loans and highlight diminishing economic returns from credit growth.
“China’s new credit data over the weekend boosted market sentiment,” said Kazuhiko Saito, an analyst at Fujitomi Co., a commodities broker in Tokyo. The dollar’s weakness also helped support copper prices, he said.
The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index, which tracks the U.S. currency against 10 major counterparts, touched 1,015.76 today, the lowest level since Dec. 18. A weaker dollar makes raw materials priced in the greenback cheaper for buyers in other trading countries.
The contract for March delivery on the Comex in New York rose 0.4 percent to $3.2765 a pound. Copper for delivery in April on the Shanghai Futures Exchange advanced 0.7 percent to 51,010 yuan ($8,411) a ton.
On the LME, aluminum, zinc and lead also climbed, while tin was little changed.
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