The monthly Copper MMI® registered a value of 89 in December, a decrease of 2.2 percent from 91 in November.
Copper prices remained pretty flat from August through November. However, last month they started to weaken. The LME 3-month price of primary copper dropped 2.9 percent, from $7,240 to $7,029 per metric ton.
This move is not a big surprise. Prices topped last month at lower levels than the previous top reached during the month of May. This has been happening since copper prices peaked in the first quarter of 2011. Since then, copper prices remain in a long-term downtrend.
Looking at the medium-term picture, we see that prices are finding support and resistance levels during the past months. It’s hard to tell what copper prices will average next month. The break of any of these lines might determine the next price levels.
Copper Price Outlook
In either case, we expect prices to continue in the major trend, remaining below $7,500 per metric ton and wouldn’t be surprised to see prices reaching levels below $7,000 per metric ton, unless we see new positive demand indicators coming up – in particular, Chinese economic growth could strengthen the buying pressure.
Key Price Drivers of Copper Index
While LME copper 3-month prices fell 2.9 percent, LME cash copper prices dropped 2.9 percent on the LME as well, to $7,026 per metric ton. US copper producer grade 110 prices fell 2.3 percent to $3.90 per pound after rising the previous month. After rising the previous month, US copper producer grade 102 prices dropped 2.2 percent to $4.09 per pound. The cash price of Chinese copper fell a slight 2.1 percent over the past month to $8,529 per metric ton. Chinese copper wire closed the month at $8,354 per metric ton after dropping 1.9 percent.
At $7,154, Chinese bright copper scrap finished the month up 1.8 percent per metric ton.
Korean copper strip traded sideways last month, staying around $10.68 per kilogram. Hovering around $7,337 per metric ton for the month, the cash price of primary Japanese copper remained unchanged.
The Copper MMI® collects and weights 12 global copper metal price points to provide a unique view into copper price trends over a 30-day period. For more information on the Copper MMI®, how it’s calculated or how your company can use the index, please drop us a note at: info (at) agmetalminer (dot) com.