|05 July, 2019

Copper under dollar pressure as the metal has biggest weekly fall since May

LME stocks jump to highest since June 2018

LONDON - Copper fell on Friday and logged its biggest weekly fall since May as the dollar hit an over two-week high and inventories in London Metal Exchange (LME) warehouses rose.

The U.S. currency gained against a basket of major currencies, making dollar-denominated commodities such as copper cheaper for non-U.S. firms, after strong jobs data for June.

"The somewhat stronger dollar (is) weighing on the commodities space," Commerzbank analyst Daniel Briesemann.

Benchmark three-month copper was down 0.3% to $5,902 per tonne and shed 1.6% on the week.

Briesemann added that the weekly decline in copper was due to markets seeking a firm deal between the United States and China, after the world's two largest economies agreed a truce at the weekend.

The nearly year-long trade dispute has rattled financial markets and dented demand for metals.

On Friday, exchange data showed headline inventories of copper in LME warehouses rose 31,450 tonnes to 302,975 tonnes, its highest in over a year, helping to erode a supply deficit this year.

SHANGHAI: Copper stocks in warehouses approved by the Shanghai Futures Exchange fell 3.5% to 140,904 tonnes from last Friday but are up about 23% so far this year.

CHINA PREMIUMS: Chinese Yangshan copper import premium SMM-CUYP-CN was at $60.50 on Friday, its highest since February.

CHINA: Chinese banks extended less in new yuan loans in June, according to a Reuters calculation based on official data, but regulators said credit needs of the broader economy were met.

EUROPE DATA: German industrial orders fell far more than expected in May, and the Economy Ministry warned on Friday that this sector of Europe's largest economy was likely to remain weak in the coming months.

ZINC SPREADS: The premium of cash zinc to the three-month contract fell to $5 per tonne on Friday, down from $161 in May and the lowest since March, suggesting greater availability of nearby metal.

Available LME stocks have risen about 25% since June 4 to 73,700 tonnes.

"The operating rate from Chinese large scale smelters has increased during June on the back of higher margins, which is helping to speed up output growth," analysts at ING said in a note, adding that they were forecasting a surplus in China from July and the rest of the year.

PRICES: Zinc fell 0.7% to $2,407, after touching its lowest since January, aluminium shed 0.2% to $1,803 per tonne, lead was down 0.5% to $1,869, tin was unchanged at $18,350, while nickel gained 1.1% to $12,480.

(Additional reporting by Mai Nguyen; Editing by Jon Boyle and Elaine Hardcastle) ((zandi.shabalala@tr.com; +44 207 542 5937; Reuters Messaging: zandi.shabalala.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net))

More From Commodities