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Markets

Chinese data weighs on copper; fund buying supports

  • Benchmark copper on the London Metal Exchange (LME) traded 0.1% down at $9,367.5 a tonne in official rings.
  • Three-month lead was down 2.2% at $2,224 a tonne.
Published July 1, 2021
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London: Copper came under pressure on Thursday as weak manufacturing data from top consumer China and a stronger dollar undermined sentiment, though fund buying offered some price support.

Benchmark copper on the London Metal Exchange (LME) traded 0.1% down at $9,367.5 a tonne in official rings, with prices of the metal used in the power and construction industries trading in a narrow $100 range.

"It's the start of the new quarter and funds are buying copper and they are buying equities. China's manufacturing PMI and the dollar are negatives," one copper trader said, adding that volumes were fairly low.

CHINA: Factory activity in China expanded at a slower pace in June as supply chain woes and a resurgence of COVID-19 cases in the export province of Guangdong drove output growth to its lowest in 15 months.

DOLLAR: A rising US currency makes dollar-denominated metals more expensive for holders of other currencies, which could subdue demand.

EQUITIES: European shares neared a record high on Thursday as upbeat corporate results helped investors to shake off concerns over inflation and the global spread of the Delta variant of the coronavirus.

LEAD: Falling stocks of lead in LME-registered warehouse - at 80,250 tonnes - have fuelled worries about supplies on the LME market and briefly created a premium for cash metal over the three-month contract.

That has since flipped to a discount, which traders attributed to expected deliveries of lead to LME warehouses.

Three-month lead was down 2.2% at $2,224 a tonne.

OTHER METALS: Aluminium fell 1% to $2,497.5, zinc was down 0.8% at $2,949.5, tin gained 0.1% to $31,290 and nickel ceded 0.7% to $18,078.

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