Copper fell for the first time in three days as a bigger-than-expected drop in U.S. durable-goods orders stoked concern demand in the world’s second-biggest user will slow and as tensions mounted in the Middle East.
The metal for delivery in three months on the London Metal Exchange declined as much as 0.7 percent to at $7,309 a metric ton and traded at $7,337.25 at 4:02 p.m. in Tokyo. The London market was closed yesterday for a bank holiday.
Bookings for goods meant to last at least three years tumbled 7.3 percent in July, the Commerce Department said yesterday, compared with a median forecast in a Bloomberg survey for a 4 percent drop. Secretary of State John Kerry said the U.S. will hold Syria accountable for using chemical weapons against its people. Equities fell in Asia.
“The U.S. durable-goods orders were a surprise,” said Hwang Il Doo, a senior trader at Korea Exchange Bank Futures Co. in Seoul. “That deepened concerns over U.S. metal demand. The unrest in Syria also damped a market sentiment as investors tried to avoid risky assets.”
Copper may trade in a range between $7,250 and $7,400 in the short term, Hwang said.
Futures for delivery in December on the Shanghai Futures Exchange declined 1 percent to close at 52,820 yuan ($8,626) a ton. Metal for delivery in December was 0.4 percent higher at $3.3415 a pound on the Comex in New York.
On the LME, zinc, tin and nickel also fell, while lead climbed. Aluminum was little changed.
Hong Kong Exchanges & Clearing Ltd. appointed Garry Jones as the chief executive of the LME. Jones, who formerly ran NYSE Liffe, is expected to join LME on Sept. 30, the Hong Kong bourse said today. He succeeds Martin Abbott, who said in June he would leave at the end of the year.