The price of copper had a roller-coaster reaction to news of a massive 8.5 earthquake in Chile, where much of South America’s copper is mined. While the quake initially pushed up the three-month copper contract on the London Metal Exchange by more than 1% to $6,728.75 a metric ton, it pulled back later in the day as news became available that most copper mining operations were not affected and closed essentially flat.
On Tuesday, April 1, the cash price of Japanese copper experienced the biggest change, rising 2.6 percent to JPY 716,000 ($6,937) per metric ton. The price of US copper producer grade 110 closed at $3.74 per pound. Following a couple days of improvement, the metal’s price weakened by 0.3 percent. The price of US copper producer grade 122 declined 0.3 percent to $3.74 per pound, after two days of improvement. Weakening prices followed two days of improvement as the price of US copper producer grade 102 dropped 0.3 percent to $3.93 per pound.
Chinese copper prices were mixed for the day. Chinese copper wire prices rose 0.2 percent to CNY 47,065 ($7,570) per metric ton. The price of Chinese copper bar flattened at CNY 47,870 ($7,699) after two days of improvement. The Chinese copper cash price ended a two-day climb, settling at CNY 48,070 ($7,732) per metric ton. For the fifth day in a row, the price of Chinese bright copper scrap remained essentially flat at CNY 44,300 ($7,125) per metric ton.
The 3-month price of copper remained essentially flat on the LME at $6,652 per metric ton. Also on the LME, the cash price of primary copper showed little movement yesterday, hovering around $6,666 per metric ton.