Copper eased on September 19
After gaining sharply in the week ending on September 16, copper prices retreated on September 19. At 1:45 PM EST on September 19, the COMEX copper futures contract for December delivery was trading at $2.15 per pound—a fall of ~0.28%.
China’s copper production rose
Chinese copper smelters increased their output due to improved profit margins—it resulted in a rise in the output. According to the data released by National Bureau of Statistics on September 19, China’s copper output rose to almost a six-month high in August. According to the data, the output rose to 743,000 metric tons in August. This is higher than July’s output of 722,000 metric tons. It’s also higher than the output of 663,000 metric tons in August last year. Copper started the day on a weaker note amid an increase in China’s output. However, it recovered losses amid a weaker dollar. Read Copper Is Weaker, Gold and Silver Are Stable on September 19 to learn how copper traded in the early hours.
Better-than-expected Chinese economic data released over last week improved the sentiment in the copper market. China’s better-than-expected industrial production data, fixed-asset investment data, and retail sales released at the beginning of the last week supported the prices. Following these data, the better-than-expected new loans data for August pushed prices up to three-week high levels. According to the People’s Bank of China, there was a rise in new loans to 948.7 billion yuan—better than the market’s expectation of 750 billion yuan.
At 2:00 PM EST, major producers Freeport-McMoRan (FCX), Glencore (GLNCY), BHP Billiton (BHP), and Rio Tinto (RIO) gained ~0.7%, ~4.4%, ~1.9%, and ~3%, respectively. The SPDR S&P Metals & Mining ETF (XME) and the PowerShares DB Base Metals (DBB) gained ~1.4% and ~0.8%.