Copper Rally Gains Pace as China Boost Inspires Chart Watchers

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  • China producer price index rose at fastest pace in five years
  • Metal extends gains after posting best quarter since 2010

Copper’s rally is showing signs of stamina.

Prices advanced the most in two months on Tuesday amid signs of quickening inflation in China, pushing prices above the metal’s 30-day moving average. Copper made a similar move to rebound above the average in late October, climbing 19 percent over the following two months before slipping back below that level.

The metal ended last year with the biggest quarterly gain since 2010 as investors bet on a brighter demand outlook in China and the U.S., the world’s two biggest users. Prices have climbed more than 4 percent this year.

“If you have a combination of breaching technical levels and positive fundamental news, then you may be tempted to think” copper prices will be going higher, Bart Melek, the head of commodity strategy at Toronto-Dominion Bank in Toronto, said in a telephone interview.

Copper futures for March delivery rose 2.9 percent, the most since Nov. 10, to settle at $2.6125 a pound at 1:18 p.m. on the Comex in New York, after touching $2.63, the highest since mid-December. The 30-day moving average is $2.5744.

In 2016, prices had their first annual gain in four years.