London copper held near a three-week low on Monday as worries over the health of China’s property sector and a build-up in the country’s stocks of the metal highlighted an expected market surplus in the second half.
More news of missing loan collateral in China worried investors as evidence that several companies lent out the same copper to several customers as loan collateral.
Large banks and trading firms are trying to determine whether they have fallen victim to a suspected commodities fraud emanating from the giant Qingdao Port in northeast China.
Citigroup and several other big Western banks are concerned that their loans may lack the appropriate collateral of big stockpiles of copper and aluminum at the port.
The cash price of Chinese copper experienced the biggest price decline of the day, dropping 2.0 percent to close at CNY 51,380 ($8,281) per metric ton on Friday, July 18. The price of Chinese copper bar flattened at CNY 51,180 ($8,249) following two-days of declines. Chinese copper wire saw little change in its price last Friday at CNY 50,790 ($8,186) per metric ton. The price of Chinese bright copper scrap held steady at CNY 44,300 ($7,140) per metric ton.
The cash price of primary Japanese copper saw a 0.8 percent decline to JPY 749,000 ($7,399) per metric ton. The price of US copper producer grade 122 saw little movement last Friday, closing out around $3.90 per pound. The price of US copper producer grade 102 remained essentially flat at $4.09 per pound. The price of US copper producer grade 110 held steady around $3.90 per pound.
On the LME, the primary copper cash price declined 1.1 percent to $7,030 per metric ton. Also on the LME, the 3-month price of copper fell 1.1 percent to $7,040 per metric ton.