China's Stockpiler Looks to Buy Copper, Nickel; Japanese Copper Cash Price Improves

China’s commodity stockpiler is looking to buy on the cheap and “is working on plans to buy about 300,000 tonnes of copper and 100,000-150,000 tonnes of nickel in 2014 to take advantage of weak international prices, said three sources with knowledge of the matter,” reports Reuters.

“The potential purchases by the State Reserves Bureau (SRB) would be equivalent to two-thirds of copper stocks and half of nickel stocks in the London Metal Exchange’s (LME) registered warehouses, which would push up prices.”

“Details of the plans have not been finalised, after the state body made enquiries about global supply and premiums of the two metals last month to select firms, according to two of the sources.”

In metal prices 

On Monday, December 16, the day’s biggest mover was the Japanese copper cash price, which saw a 1.2 percent increase. After a 0.5 percent increase, the price of US copper producer grade 110 finished the day. The price of US copper producer grade 122 increased 0.5 percent. The price of US copper producer grade 102 gained 0.5 percent to finish.

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Chinese copper closed mixed on Monday. Chinese copper bar gained 0.1 percent to finish. The Chinese copper cash price finished the market day up 0.1 percent per metric ton. Chinese copper wire held its value on Monday. The price of Chinese bright copper scrap continues to hover for the fifth day in a row.

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On the LME, the primary copper cash price fell 0.2 percent to $7,218 per metric ton. Also on the LME, the 3-month price of copper held steady around $7,218 per metric ton.

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