Copper Climbs as Orders Jump; Aluminum Advances to One-Week High

Copper gained, rebounding from three consecutive weeks of losses, after data showed orders to remove the metal from warehouses jumped to the highest level in more than 15 years and amid concerns over strikes in Chile.

Copper for delivery in three months rose as much as 1.2 percent to $7,494.75 a metric ton on the London Metal Exchange, before trading at $7,480 at 3:44 p.m. Shanghai time. The metal lost 4.5 percent in the past three weeks. The August contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange closed 1.1 percent higher at 54,590 yuan ($8,798) a ton.

LME canceled warrants, which indicate the orders to remove metal from warehouses, climbed to 147,025 tons on April 5, bourse data showed. That was the highest since at least October 1997, according to figures compiled by Bloomberg. Copper miners in Chile plan to announce the date of a nationwide strike today, a miners’ union representing workers at state-owned Codelco said in a statement e-mailed yesterday.

“After retreating 11 percent from its February high, copper is witnessing a technical rebound,” Tong Ling, an analyst at Essence Futures Co., said by phone from Beijing, referring to the Feb. 4 intraday high of $8,346. “Seasonal demand, as indicated by surging canceled warrants, will help the temporary rally.”

Copper for May delivery on the Comex in New York gained 0.9 percent to $3.373 a pound. Net-short positions, or wagers on falling prices, held by funds advanced to 38,951 futures and options contracts as of April 2 from 30,036 a week earlier, according to the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission.

On the LME, aluminum gained as much as 1 percent to $1,905.75 a ton, the highest level since March 28, while nickel rebounded 1.2 percent to $16,140 after falling to the lowest level in more than four months on April 5. Zinc, lead and tin also advanced.

— With assistance by Helen Sun

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