Copper prices gain on stimulus hopes

Copper rose to a one-week high in Monday trading on heightened expectations of stimulus packages following the release of weak Chinese data.

Three-month copper futures on the London Metal Exchange ended 0.8% higher than Friday's close at USD$7,678 per metric tonne after hitting a one-week high of USD$7,700 earlier in the day.

According to Reuters Chinese data indicated a major slowdown in factory activity during August with the China HSBC Purchasing Mangers' Index falling to its lowest level since March 2009 following seasonal adjustment.

The Australian reports that the official Chinese government PMI figure fell to a nine month low for its fourth consecutive decline, clearly indicating the onset of a contraction.

Investors now consider further stimulus measures from both China and the US to be likely, especially following Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke's Jackson Hole speech at which he expressed "grave concern" over US unemployment levels.

Euro zone manufacturing sector data also indicated a rapid contraction with core countries failing to provide support.

Read more>>