Copper Jumps Most in Three Weeks as Base Metals Climb

Copper posted the biggest gain in almost seven months after European leaders reached an agreement to help contain the region’s debt crisis, easing concern that economic growth and metals demand will ebb.

Policy makers relaxed repayment rules for Spanish banks and conditions for possible aid to Italy, and unveiled a growth plan for the region’s economy. The dollar fell the most since October against the euro, boosting the appeal of commodities as alternative assets.

“It’s a reaction to the news about the European Union situation,” Nikos Kavalis, an analyst at Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc in London, said in a telephone interview. “For this to become a trend, you need a series of news to come out to suggest they are really taking the necessary steps.”

Copper futures for September delivery climbed 5 percent to settle at $3.4965 a pound at 1:21 p.m. on the Comex in New York. The increase was the biggest since Nov. 30. Prices added 5.5 percent this week, the biggest such gain since January. For the quarter, prices were down 8.6 percent.

Inventories monitored by the London Metal Exchange rose for a seventh session to 257,150 metric tons. That capped an 11 percent increase for June, the first monthly expansion since September.

On the LME, copper for delivery in three months rose 4.1 percent to $7,685 a ton ($3.49 a pound).

Zinc, aluminum, lead, nickel and tin also gained in London.

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