Chinalco Drops Out of Race for Glencore's Las Bambas Mine; Japanese Copper Rises

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China’s Chinalco has decided to “[drop] out of the race for Glencore Xstrata’s (GLEN.L) $5.9 billion Las Bambas copper mine in Peru, leaving Minmetals as the front-runner, sources familiar with the matter said,” reports Reuters.

“Commodities trader Glencore agreed this year to sell Las Bambas to secure approval from China’s competition authorities for its takeover of miner Xstrata because Beijing feared the merged group would have too much power over the copper market.”

“A Chinese buyer has been considered a virtual certainty since Las Bambas was put on the block, given the deep pockets of the country’s state-owned enterprises and China’s hunger for copper – it is already the world’s top consumer of the metal.”

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The week’s biggest mover on the weekly Copper MMI® was the cash price of Japanese copper, which saw a 1.2 percent increase. This comes on the heels of a 1.2 percent decline the week prior. The price of US copper producer grade 122 rose 0.8 percent after falling 2.0 percent during the previous week. The price of US copper producer grade 110 rose 0.8 percent after falling 2.0 percent during the previous week. The price of US copper producer grade 102 rose 0.7 percent after falling 1.9 percent during the previous week. Korean copper strip traded sideways last week.

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Chinese copper prices were mixed for the week. The price of Chinese copper wire rose 0.6 percent after falling 1.7 percent during the previous week. The week finished with no movement for Chinese copper bar. This past week, the Chinese copper cash price kept quiet. Prices for Chinese bright copper scrap remained constant.

The cash price of primary copper rose 0.8 percent on the LME to $6,991 per metric ton after falling 2.5 percent during the previous week. The 3-month price of copper rose 0.6 percent on the LME to $6,992 per metric ton after falling 2.4 percent during the previous week.

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