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Copper price rises as China releases fewer metal reserves than expected

Copper cathodes (Stock Image)

The copper price rose on Thursday, as China decided to release fewer metals reserves than expected.

Copper for delivery in September rose 1.6% from Wednesday’s settlement price, touching $4.343 per pound ($9,554 per tonne) midday Thursday on the Comex market in New York.

The most-traded August copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange increased 0.8% to 68,740 yuan ($10,632.14) a tonne.

Click here for an interactive chart of copper prices

1 year copper price

China will sell another 30,000 tonnes of copper, 90,000 tonnes of aluminum, and 50,000 tonnes of zinc at auction from its state reserves on July 29, less than the market anticipated.

“It is slightly less than the market expected but it should be priced in already as it’s pretty well flagged,” said Anna Stablum, a commodities broker at Marex Spectron.

The auction marked the second sale by China this month as the government aims to rein in skyrocketing commodity prices.

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Since announcing the sale of stockpiled base metals on June 16, domestic futures prices have been little changed, or risen slightly.

The global world refined copper market showed a deficit of 75,000 tonnes in April, compared with 13,000 tonnes deficit in March, the International Copper Study Group said in its latest monthly bulletin.

World refined copper output in April was 2.07 million tonnes, while consumption was 2.14 million tonnes. 

(With files from Reuters)