Copper starts the week on a weak note
Copper started the week on a negative note on Monday, May 30, 2016. At 12:45 PM EST, COMEX copper contracts for July delivery were seen trading at $2.10 per pound, a fall of 0.9%. The strength of the US dollar and the uncertainty of demand from China has kept the pressure on copper prices.
Copper output falls in Chile
According to the government of Chile, copper output from the world’s top copper-producing nation fell in April 2016 due to heavy rains and a decline in the ore grade. Ore grade directly impacts the cost of copper mining. In April 2016, Chilean copper mines produced 432,000 tons, a year-over-year (or YoY) fall in production of 8.2%.
Heavy rains also resulted in the suspension of mining operations by Anglo American (AAUKY) and Codelco. In the first four months of 2016, Chile produced 1.8 million tons of copper, a YoY fall in production of 4.7%.
The Market is looking forward to the release of Chinese manufacturing PMI (purchasing managers’ index) data, which are scheduled to release on May 31, 2016. Last week, major copper producer Freeport-McMoRan (FCX) fell by 2.1%. BHP Billiton (BHP), Rio Tinto (RIO), and Glencore (GLNCY) rose by 5.6%, 2.0%, and 1.4%, respectively. The base metal–related SPDR S&P Metals & Mining ETF (XME) rose by 0.61%.
Gold trades below $1,200 per ounce
Gold futures contracts for June delivery traded below $1,200 per ounce, marking an intraday low of $1,199 per ounce for the first time since February 2016. The increased chance of a June interest rate hike is supporting the US dollar and keeping the pressure on gold prices.
At 12:45 PM EST on May 30, gold contracts for June delivery were trading at $1,205.70 per ounce, a fall of 0.55%, whereas silver was trading at $16.02, a fall of 1.5%.
In the last week, precious metals producers Barrick Gold (ABX), Newmont Mining (NEM), Royal Gold (RGLD), and Silver Wheaton (SLW) have fallen by 7.2%, 5.5%, 1.5%, and 4.5%, respectively. The precious metals–based SPDR Gold Trust ETF (GLD) has fallen by 3.1% during the same period.