LIVE FUTURES REPORT 15/06: Comex copper tumbles in final session

Comex copper prices tumbled Friday morning in the US amid a strong dollar, escalating trade war fears and disappointing Chinese data.

Copper for July settlement on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange tumbled 5.20 cents – or 1.6% – to $3.1700 per lb. Earlier, the contract touched $3.1645. 

“We maintain our friendly copper view in the near term, treating the recent price weakness as a purely technical consolidation unlikely to last too long,” Metal Bulletin analyst Boris Mikanikrezai said.

“Although macro factors have started to turn negative [stronger dollar, weaker risk-taking appetite, disappointing Chinese macro data], we expect the fundamentals to move in the right direction in the course of 2018, leaving the market in a deficit. As such, we are induced to buy the dips,” Mikanikrezai added.

The rest of the complex continues to trade lower, with the strong dollar weighing on metals prices as the dollar index continues to hold above 94.00. The index has been supported by the US Federal Open Market Committee announcement of a 25-basis-point rise in interest rates at its meeting on Wednesday.

In precious metals, Comex gold for August delivery declined $17.20 – or 1.3% – to $1,291.10 per oz. Trade has ranged from $1,289.90 to $1,306.70.

Currency moves and data releases 

  • The dollar index was down 0.03% to 94.80.
  • In other commodities, the Texas light sweet crude oil spot price was down 0.91% to $66.28 per barrel.
  • In US data on Friday, the Empire State manufacturing index came in at 25.0, above the forecast of 19.1. Capacity utilization rate missed the target with a 77.9% reading, while industrial production dipped 0.1% month over month. Consumer sentiment, inflation expectations and long-term purchases are due later today.
What to read next
Lepidolite producers in China have been a major wildcard in the lithium industry of late, with production surging despite its higher cost, energy-intensive nature.
The Western Australia Nickel assets owned by BHP are the latest casualty of the rout currently disrupting the nickel industry, with the miner saying that it might put the entire operating unit on care and maintenance
Weak demand continues to stem profitability and prevent capacity return in the European aluminium market, Norsk Hydro’s chief executives told Fastmarkets in an exclusive interview on Wednesday February 14.
Fastmarkets proposes to amend the frequency of its MB-AL-0389 aluminium low-carbon differential P1020A, US Midwest and MB-AL-0390 aluminium low-carbon differential value-added product, US Midwest to a weekly basis from the current monthly basis.
The copper concentrate market was already tight, but the addition of major new smelting capacity this year – starting with the expansion of Freeport’s Gresik smelter in Indonesia — will likely mean maintenance breaks, capacity curtailments and potentially even closures while operating costs start to become untenable, Fastmarkets understands.
Major aluminium producers Alcoa, Rio Tinto and Century Aluminum have been accused of pocketing vast sums of money from the sale of aluminium products to the beverage industry in the US at inflated prices – and of potentially colluding to do so