Most base metals rose as investors await industrial production data from China that’s forecast to show an improvement in activity from the weakest in more than six years.
Copper rose for a fourth day, the longest streak in a month. Industrial output likely grew by 6 percent in May from a year earlier, according to the median estimate of analysts in a Bloomberg survey before the data Thursday, a slight improvement from a March figure that was the weakest since 2008.
“April and May are usually seen as peak season for metals demand so steady industrial production data is expected,” said Fang Junfeng, an analyst at Shanghai Cifco Futures Co. “Chinese copper demand should improve as the government may add more stimulus.”
Copper for delivery in three months on the London Metal Exchange rose 0.2 percent to $5,977.50 a metric ton ($2.71 a pound) at 3:03 p.m. in Shanghai. On the Comex in New York, futures for July delivery climbed 0.1 percent to $2.7165 a pound, while in Shanghai, the contract for August advanced 0.3 percent to close at 43,370 yuan ($6,989) a ton.
On the LME, all metals climbed except for nickel, which fell from a three-week high.
— With assistance by Alfred Cang