Copper at a six month low after fears resurface about Chinese economy

Copper dropped sharply on Friday, reaching a six-month low, after China's decision to cut interest rates suddenly revived fears of a slowdown in the second largest economy.

At the close of the session, copper had fallen 3.06% on the London Metal Exchange (LME).  Changing hands at $3.29 per pound, the metal is down 1.5% for the week.

China surprised investors on Thursday after the country announced its first interest-rate cut since 2008.

Over the weekend China will release its industrial production for May as well as its trade data.  The data is expected to show a decline in the import of the red metal, as unfavourable prices and high stockpiles grind down demand.

China consumes nearly 40% of refined copper production.  According to Reuters, as much as 80% of imports are not used immediately by industry but by investors as collateral to secure cheaper loans.

May was the third month of declines for the commodity, which is a bellwether for the metals industry and often regarded as a leading indicator for economic growth given its widespread use in construction, communication and transport.

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