Copper Futures Cap Longest Rally This Month as Stockpiles Fall

  • Copper gains for a third day, longest streak since Sept. 30
  • Nickel supply deficit in 2017 seen at 66,000 tons: INSG

Copper capped its longest stretch of gains this month as a run on stockpiles boosted speculation that demand for the metal is increasing.

Inventories tracked by the London Metal Exchange fell for a fifth straight day, and have slid 11 percent from an almost three-year high reached last month. Supplies on the Shanghai Futures Exchange posted the eighth drop in nine days. Prices of the metal used in pipes and wiring also rose after a report showed sales of new U.S. homes held close to an almost nine-year high.

“We’re starting to see a pretty consistent pattern of draws in the LME,” Frank Cholly, a senior market strategist at RJO Futures in Chicago, said in a telephone interview. “When you get some fundamentals that are supportive like copper-stock drop-downs, that’s going to make the spike up so much sharper.”

Copper futures for December delivery rose 0.3 percent to settle at $2.1455 a pound at 1:11 p.m. on the Comex in New York, gaining for a third straight day, the longest stretch since Sept. 30.

In other metals:

  • Indonesia’s Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry said Wednesday it will discuss its export policy with nickel miners and smelters in the country next week. The government has been considering revising regulations to allow semi-processed metal to be shipped beyond 2017.
  • The International Nickel Study Group said the market will be in a 66,000-ton deficit next year.
  • Copper for delivery in three months rose 0.1 percent to $4,740 a metric ton ($2.15 a pound) on the LME.
  • Aluminum, nickel and tin also climbed in London, while zinc and lead dropped.
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