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Copper Advances on Bets Demand Will Climb in China, U.S.

Copper futures rose for the second straight session on signs that demand will pick up as economies gain in China, the world’s top consumer of industrial metals, and the U.S., the second-biggest.

China’s central bank extended a cut in reserve requirements to some national lenders as officials try to support the economy without broader stimulus. In the U.S., industrial output increased more than forecast in May, while the Federal Reserve of New York’s Empire manufacturing report unexpectedly climbed this month as orders jumped.

“Worries about China’s slowing growth are starting to go away,” Mike Dragosits, a senior commodity strategist at TD Securities in Toronto, said in a telephone interview. “That should increase investment spending. The numbers out of the U.S. are also adding to the demand-side story for base metals.”

Copper futures for September delivery rose 0.5 percent to settle at $3.044 a pound at 1:11 p.m. on the Comex in New York. The price climbed 0.4 percent on June 13.

Chinese officials are trying to shore up an economy set for the weakest growth since 1990 without worsening credit risks fueled by an explosion in lending during and after the global financial crisis.

Copper for delivery in three months advanced 0.5 percent to $6,691 a metric ton ($3.04 a pound) on the London Metal Exchange. Stockpiles monitored by the LME fell for the 12th straight session to 162,250 tons, the lowest since August 2008.

Nickel, aluminum, lead and zinc rose in London. Tin fell.

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