Copper MMI®: Prices Still Low, Rio Tinto Considers Outside Supply for Utah Smelter

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Rio Tinto‘s Kennecott copper smelter is considering treating third-party concentrate on a large scale for the first time, as the second-biggest US copper producer tries to tackle falling ore grades from its nearby mine.

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Chinese output kept prices low this week, as well, as copper continues to face the dual price pressure of low consumption there and heavy use of the red metal as loan collateral.

Chinese copper wire dropped to CNY 47,835 ($7,788) per metric ton making it the biggest mover on the weekly Copper MMI® this week, after drifting 5.1%. Chinese bright copper scrap saw a 3.6% drop-off this week to end at CNY 42,700 ($6,952) per metric ton. Chinese copper bar saw a 0.7% decline over the past week to CNY 48,580 ($7,910) per metric ton. The cash price of Chinese copper fell 0.7% last week, settling at CNY 48,780 ($7,942) per metric ton.

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The cash price of primary Japanese copper rose 1.3% this week, closing out the third week at JPY 808,000 ($7,421) per metric ton. Following a 1.1% drop, the price of US copper producer grade 122 finished the week at $3.70 per pound. With a 1.1% decrease, the price of US copper producer grade 110 closed the week at $3.70 per pound. The price of US copper producer grade 102 declined to $3.89 per pound after drifting 1.0% since last week. Closing at KRW 9,640 ($9.02) per kilogram, Korean copper strip remained unchanged for the week.

The copper 3-month price rose 1.2% on the LME to $6,695 per metric ton after falling 1.3% during the previous week. The primary copper cash price rose 1.1% on the LME to $6,755 per metric ton after falling 1.5% during the previous week.

The Copper MMI® collects and weights 12 global copper metal price points to provide a unique view into copper price trends. 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.

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