This Morning in Metals: Copper is Getting a Jolt from the EV Sector

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This morning in metals news, U.S. copper deposits are garnering investment from electric vehicle (EV) industry players, London copper rose Friday and the E.U. mulls retaliation if the U.S. imposes tariffs on automobiles.

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Copper Investment

The copper price struggled through the final quarter of 2018, but according to a Reuters report the metal could be getting a boost in demand from the EV sector.

According to the report, U.S. copper deposits have received $1.1 billion in investments from miners looking to fill demand from EV makers.

LME Copper Rises

Sticking with the metal, the London copper price moved up Friday but was set to take a weekly loss, according to Reuters.

The projected 1.6% weekly drop would mark the biggest weekly decline since late December, according to the report.

Back and Forth

Last August, the U.S. Department of Commerce launched a Section 232 probe investigating whether imports of automobiles and automotive parts pose a national security threat.

While the Commerce Department has yet to take action — the first step being the submission of a report and recommendations to President Donald Trump — the E.U. has promised to respond if the U.S. opts to impose tariffs.

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According to a report by Fortune, the E.U. this week said it is prepared to impose $23 billion in tariffs on U.S. goods if the U.S. imposes tariffs on automobiles.

The Commerce Department launched the Section 232 automotive probe May 23, 2018. Pursuant to Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962, the secretary of commerce must present the president with a report, including recommendations, within 270 days of the initiation of the probe (making for a late February deadline in this case).

Section 232 produced the Trump administration’s tariffs on imported steel and aluminum (25% and 10%, respectively). Prior to the Trump administration, Section 232 was last invoked under President George W. Bush in a 2001 probe that investigated the impact of imports of iron ore and semi-finished steel.

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