Copper, Industrial Metals Climb as China Credit Tops Estimates

Copper rose to a one-week high and aluminum rebounded from an 11-month low as credit growth expanded more than forecast in China, the world’s largest user of industrial metal.

Aggregate financing was 1.35 trillion yuan ($216 billion) in February, China’s central bank said Thursday. That topped the median estimate of 1 trillion yuan by analysts surveyed by Bloomberg. Nickel, zinc and lead also rose in London.

“In China, they take in copper and use it for financing deals,” Eric Zuccarelli, an independent trader in New York, said in a telephone interview. “When they lessen credit standards, they can import more copper to do those financing deals and boost demand.”

Copper for delivery in three months advanced 2 percent to $5,844 a metric ton ($2.65 a pound) at 5:51 p.m. on the London Metal Exchange. Earlier, the price reached $5,884, the highest since March 3.

Aluminum gained 0.2 percent to $1,748 a ton. On Wednesday, the price touched $1,744.85, the lowest since March 28, 2014. Tin dropped on the LME.

Copper futures for May delivery advanced 2 percent to $2.6585 a pound on the Comex in New York. Aggregate trading was 26 percent above the 100-day average for this time, data compiled by Bloomberg shows.

In Chile, the world’s top producer, the environment regulator ordered the Antofagasta port operator to shut warehouses storing copper concentrate for 30 days after discovering particles posing a health hazard.

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