Copper’s Loss May Be The World Economy’s Gain

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Copper, the commodity with an economics degree, suggests the health of the world economy may not be so bad after all, according to a Bloomberg News analysis.

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Sliding oil prices have captured the attention of doomsayers worried that Brent crude’s 29% decline from its June peak to a four-year low is a sign of deteriorating international demand. Copper’s recent sell-off is half the 18% peak-to-trough decline during slowdowns since 2010.

To Keith Parker, head of asset allocation at Barclays PLC in New York, the 7% drop in the price of copper on the London Metal Exchange signals the global economy may hold up and soon accelerate.

The price of US copper producer grade 110 fell 0.8% on Tuesday, November 11 to $3.73 per pound, making it the day’s biggest mover. Following two days of rising prices, the price of US copper producer grade 122 dropped 0.8% to $3.73 per pound. The price of US copper producer grade 102 declined 0.8% to $3.92 per pound, after two days of improvement. After a 0.2% increase, the Japanese copper cash price finished the day at JPY 805,000 ($7,394) per metric ton.

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Chinese copper closed mixed yesterday. Weakening prices followed two days of improvement as the price of Chinese copper bar dropped 0.6% to CNY 48,860 ($7,955) per metric ton. The Chinese copper cash price changed direction with a 0.6% drop. After two days of improving prices, the metal finished at CNY 49,060 ($7,988) per metric ton. The price of Chinese copper wire remained essentially flat at CNY 50,395 ($8,205) per metric ton. The price of Chinese bright copper scrap continues hovering around CNY 44,300 ($7,213) per metric ton for the fifth day in a row.

On the LME, the copper 3-month price rose 0.5% to $6,675 per metric ton. After a 0.2% increase, the cash price of primary copper finished the day on the LME at $6,735 per metric ton.

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