Miners in Best Run Since ’08 on Stimulus Hopes and Metals Rally

  • Anglo American, Glencore help FTSE mine index climb this week
  • Zinc at highest in a year as data shows China is stabilizing

Mining stocks posted an eighth weekly advance, the longest run in eight years, as hopes of more central-bank stimulus boosted equities and sent tin and zinc prices to the highest in more than a year.

The FTSE 350 Mining Index gained 5.3 percent this week, led by companies including Anglo American Plc and Glencore Plc, and the London Metal Exchange’s index of metals reached a nine-month high. Copper rose as much as 1.2 percent Friday as economic data from China, the biggest metals user, beat estimates. Shares of Phoenix-based Freeport-McMoRan Inc. advanced.

Global equities held near the highest level this year. Investors have been buying stocks as speculation mounted that policy makers around the world will take steps to shore up growth in the wake of the U.K.’s vote to leave the European Union. Some metals have also been supported by expectations that demand will exceed supply.

“The Chinese data today was reasonably constructive and shows the economy there is stabilizing, and we’re off our lows in terms of many indicators,” Edward Meir, an analyst at INTL FCStone Inc. in New York, said in a telephone interview. “For now, it seems like all the metals are pushing higher.”

Zinc advanced in London. The metal for delivery in three months rose as much as 2.1 percent to $2,235 a metric ton, the highest since May 2015, and closed at $2,204 at 5:50 p.m. on the LME. It has rallied 37 percent this year amid forecasts for a global shortage as producers curbed supply after a slowdown in China cut prices last year.

China’s economy grew 6.7 percent in the second quarter from a year earlier, beating the 6.6 percent forecast in a Bloomberg survey. Figures for factory output, retail sales and new lending also topped estimates.

The FTSE mining index lost 0.8 percent on Friday. It touched the highest in almost a year on Wednesday.

In other metals news:

  • On the LME, aluminum, nickel, copper and lead dropped on Friday.
  • Tin climbed as much as 0.9 percent on the LME to the highest since February 2015.
  • Copper futures for September delivery fell 0.4 percent to $2.2335 a pound on the Comex in New York. The metal rose in the previous four sessions.
  • Copper stockpiles in warehouses tracked by the LME dropped 1.6 percent, the most in almost a month.
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