PRICING NOTICE: Specification of Metal Bulletin copper concentrates TC/RC index

The Metal Bulletin Copper Concentrates Index is a twice-monthly reference price for treatment and refining charges in the Asia-Pacific market. This is the specification.

The Metal Bulletin Copper Concentrates Index is a twice-monthly reference price for treatment and refining charges in the Asia-Pacific market. This is the specification.

Basis: cif Asia Pacific ports
Price: Treatment charge/refining charge (TC/RC): USD per DMTU/US cents per lb
Cu (%): base: 28%; max: 37%; min: 22%
Au (g/dmt): base: 1.1; max: 50
Ag (g/dmt): base: 75; max: 350
S (%): base: 32%; max: 38%; min: 20%
Fe (%): base: 28%; max: 35%; min: 15%
Pb (%): base: 0.07%; max: 5.5%
Zn (%): base: 2%; max: 5%
As (%): base: 0.17%; max: 2%
Sb (%): base: 0.018%; max: 0.2%
Hg (ppm): base: 2.5; max: 10
Bi (ppm): base: 145; max: 2500

Trade size: minimum 5,000 tonnes
Delivery window: within 13 weeks
Delivery method: bulk carrier
Payment terms: letter of credit
Publication: twice-monthly at 3pm London time on the 15th and last day of month, or nearest preceding working day in the event that such dates fall on a weekend or a UK public holiday
Quotational period: M+3

The Index is a tonnage-weighted calculation of actual transactions that have been normalised to a base specification and delivery point, using the value-in-use for different materials applied by the market.

Data collection
The basis for all our indices is the data provided by the market. In order to provide the most representative pricing for the market, it is essential we are able to collect as many representative data points as possible.

Metal Bulletin utilises a number of methods to collect data. These include phone calls, email, website input and messenger services across our offices in the UK, China and Singapore.

All data is stored on secure servers and can be accessed if required for auditing purposes.

Actual transactions
All the Metal Bulletin Indices are based on actual transactions, which are collected by us from any market participant who is conducting trades on a spot basis.

Metal Bulletin will also collect assessments, offers and bids from the market to supplement transaction data when appropriate. This non-transaction price data will be weighted at less than minimum tonnage for the index.

Metal Bulletin aims to collect full details of each transaction including, copper content, brand, commercial terms and any other details relevant to value and pricing.

Market balance
The Metal Bulletin Indices use a unique mechanism to structurally balance the influence of all sides of the market. This reduces the potential risk of market distortions and bias in the data.

Two sub-indices
The published index figure is the straight average of two sub-indices, each of which contain data from one side of the market: buyers and sellers.

Each sub-index is a tonnage-weighted calculation of normalised price data. The use of two sub-indices means that each side of the market has exactly the same influence on the final price, removing the possibility of bias. Only the final index is published.


The data is normalised using an in-house developed model based on the value-in-use applied by the market to different chemistries and brands to a single specification.

The normalisation coefficients have been developed using Metal Bulletin’s historical data and history of reporting prices in this market. Metal Bulletin Indices have their normalisation coefficients updated every quarter to reflect the constantly changing value-in-use relationship.

Material that differs from the base specification but falls within the target range is normalised to the base specification. The base specification has been chosen in consultation with the market to reflect the reality of the physical spot market.

Material is also normalised by brand. Brand normalisation takes into account all those other factors that may affect price but can’t be observed. Finally, material that is imported by routes other than by sea, for example by train or truck is normalised using our historical data.

Payment terms are based on typical commercial practice in the market. Non-standard terms such as M-1 will not be considered.

Market representation
The Metal Bulletin Indices have been specifically constructed to automatically exclude outliers and provide a fair market representation through the two sub-indices.


All data points that fall further than 10% away from the initial calculated index are excluded, and the index recalculated. Outliers will be investigated, and attempts to unfairly influence the index will result in the data provider being warned or excluded.

Metal Bulletin reserves the right to see contracts and signed paperwork before inclusion of the data in the calculation. If this is refused then the data, or the data supplier, can be excluded from the data collection process. Metal Bulletin reserves the right to exclude data that is not fairly presented or is an effort to distort the market.

If the material delivered is different to that expected at the original transaction no changes will be made to the indices. The spot price paid was for the expected material. Any changes made in retrospect are between buyer and seller.

The Copper Concentrates Index is published every 15th and last day of each month (or the closest working day that precedes that date if it falls on a weekend or a UK public holiday).

Metal Bulletin has no financial interest in the level or direction of the index.

Sign up here for copper TC/RC price history.

For further information on the Metal Bulletin Group Copper concentrate Index please contact:

Alex Harrison
Editor – Metal Bulletin | +44 (0)20 7827 6415

Mark Burton | +44 (0)20 7827 6436

Inaki Villanueva | +44 (0)20 7827 6468

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