WEEK IN BRIEF: Copper price plunge; TC/RCs; Fanya; LME roadmap

Metal Bulletin deputy editor Fleur Ritzema takes a look back at some of the key stories from the past week.

Metal Bulletin deputy editor Fleur Ritzema takes a look back at some of the key stories from the past week.

Copper’s losing streak has been raising eyebrows for the past few weeks, but it was Wednesday’s falls that really had jaws hitting the floor.

The plummeting oil price forced all metals prices down and was the main driver in an increasingly bruised and battered copper market.

While the London Metal Exchange copper price was slightly higher during Asian morning trading on Friday, amid hopes that easing measures by China will boost demand, the damage from the week’s price falls reached far and wide.

The collapse wiped billions of dollars off the market cap of miners with the heaviest exposure to the red metal, with Glencore’s shares dropping nearly 10% to a record low on the London Stock Exchange.

The lower prices could see smaller copper mines forced to cut back or even idle production and capital projects could be suspended if copper prices remain low, according to industry analysts.

However, there was a big win for one small cap producer who hedged copper.

Here, Metal Bulletin editor Alex Harrison considers what to watch out for after the copper price falls.

Elsewhere, spot treatment and refining charges (TC/RCs) for copper concentrates dropped by about 2% in the first two weeks of January. Find out why here.

And Andrea Hotter and Lord Copper gave their comments on the LME’s new roadmap.

Red Kite posted an $18m profit in the year to March, while there was good news for ENRC from Zambia.

In the markets, European aluminium premiums fell on high supply as buyers finally came into the market for metal, after a deathly quiet start to the year.

See the full story here.

In China, the Fanya Metal Exchange published new rules to govern investor trading on the exchange.

The minor metals exchange also rejected claims that it has stopped paying for material delivered onto the exchange.

Indium prices continued to drop in China amid a broad commodities sell-off, while concerns over “fake indium” left buyers wary.

And international antimony prices tumbled on Wednesday, as traders cut offers on a slump in sentiment.

Manganese ore prices also dropped on Friday January 16 after a leading miner cut offer prices. More here.

And apparently X2 Resources, the venture set up by former Xstrata ceo Mick Davis, is considering a bid for the nickel assets of Brazilian miner Vale. Here’s what Andrea Hotter had to say about the rumour.

Fleur Ritzema
Twitter: FleurRitzema_MB

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