Industrial Metals Climb With Oil as Copper Touches 2-Month High

Industrial metals advanced along with crude oil and gold, while copper climbed to a two-month high as torrential rain in Chile closed mines in the world’s biggest producer of the metal.

Copper and nickel both increased as much as 2.3 percent while aluminum advanced as much as 1.8 percent. Oil headed for its biggest five-day gain since 2011 as Saudi Arabia bombed rebel targets in Yemen, renewing concern conflict will spread in the Middle East, while gold rose above $1,200 an ounce. Codelco, the world’s biggest copper producer, shut all of its Atacama mines including Chuquicamata and Radomiro Tomic as rains in the Atacama Desert of northern Chile closed roads and flooded towns.

“Base metals jumped as oil prices surged,” said Ye Yugang, a senior analyst at Jinrui Futures in Shenzhen.

The rains also forced Lundin Mining Corp. to close its Candelaria mine and Pan Pacific Copper Co. to shutter Caserones. Antofagasta Plc said its Michilla and Centinela mines were closed, while its biggest mine, Los Pelambres, continued to operate, according to a company official.

“Copper supply expectations have been revised again after news that rains in Chile forced mines shut,” said Fang Junfeng, an analyst at Shanghai Cifco Futures Co. “The market is entering a peak consumption season in the northern hemisphere.”

Copper for delivery in three months on the London Metal Exchange climbed to as much as $6,267 a metric ton, the highest intraday level since Jan. 5 and traded at $6,253 a ton ($2.83 a pound) at 4:19 p.m. in Shanghai. Prices are up 3.4 percent this week, paring losses this year to 0.8 percent.

On the Comex in New York, copper for May delivery gained 2.1 percent at $2.85 a pound, while the metal for June in Shanghai rose 0.6 percent to close at 43,930 yuan ($6,982) a ton.

— With assistance by Alfred Cang

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