This Morning in Metals: Copper price surges after January cooldown

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copper bars

Shawn Hempel/Adobe Stock

This morning in metals news: the copper price is on its way back up again; meanwhile, Rio Tinto reached a new power agreement for its ISAL aluminum smelter; and, lastly, oil prices continue to rise.

Copper price surges

After a sleepy January, copper prices are back on the ascent.

The LME three-month copper price closed last week at $8,251 per metric ton. The price marked its 2021 high and, furthermore, a more than eight-year high.

Copper — and other base metals — cooled in January ahead of the Lunar New Year celebrations in China.

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Rio Tinto reaches new ISAL power agreement

Rio Tinto announced a new power agreement for its ISAL aluminum smelter in Iceland.

“Rio Tinto has reached agreement on an amended power contract that will allow the ISAL aluminium smelter in Iceland to continue operating with an improved competitive position,” the firm said.

“The agreement with power supplier, Landsvirkjun, will deliver a more competitive power price and energy flexibility that is mutually beneficial for both ISAL and Landsvirkjun.”

Oil prices on the rise

Oil prices languished throughout most of 2020, impacted by plummeting demand in light of the coronavirus pandemic.

However, oil prices have slowly but surely clawed back some gains of late.

According to the Energy Information Administration, the WTI crude oil price reached $58.24 per barrel, up $7.07 per barrel from a year earlier.

For retail consumers, the national average gas price reached $2.507 per gallon as of Feb. 15, according to AAA. The average is up from $2.378 per gallon a month ago.

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