Copper Posts Longest Rally in Two Months as U.K. Votes on EU

  • Futures traded in New York set for fifth straight advance
  • Growth in euro-area’s private sector slows more than expected

Copper posted the longest rally in two months as investors looked past concerns about global economic growth to focus on the U.K.’s European Union referendum.

Stocks gained and the pound strengthened with voting under way on U.K. membership in the EU. Attention on the vote eclipsed reports indicating slower private-sector growth in the euro area and a decline in U.S. new-home sales.

Copper’s rally this week erased losses for the year, while gains in Vale SA, Anglo American Plc and Freeport-McMoRan Inc. helped push a gauge of 18 global base-metal producers on Thursday to a two-week high. Copper last fell on June 16, after global central bankers sounded the alarm that Britain’s departure from the EU could be disruptive to the global economy.

“Any other news is likely to be virtually ignored,” Commerzbank AG analysts including Daniel Briesemann said in a note. “Significant losses will no doubt also be incurred here in the event of a Brexit.”

Copper futures for September delivery advanced 1.4 percent to settle at $2.1655 a pound at 1:11 p.m. on the Comex in New York. Prices had a fifth straight gain, the longest stretch since April 22. On the London Metal Exchange, copper for delivery in three months rose 1.7 percent to $4,780 a metric ton ($2.17 a pound).

The dollar, seen as a haven, weakened as much as 0.7 percent to the lowest since early May against a basket of 10 major currencies tracked by Bloomberg. A weaker dollar makes raw materials cheaper in other currencies.

  • Aluminum, lead and tin also gained in London, while zinc and nickel fell.
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