Business

Copper anticipated to marginally rise

TRYNESS MBALE , Lusaka
COPPER price is projected to trade around US$5,500 per tonne on the international market in the fourth quarter, according to a latest report by Metal Bulletin Research (MBR).
MBR’s base metals forecaster provides independent forecasting and coverage of all key parameters affecting market movement of copper, nickel, tin, lead and zinc.
The research body, however, says its low case scenario projection of copper price in the fourth quarter is US$ 5,150 per tonne due to the negative sentiment surrounding China economy.
“Our base case forecast for fourth quarter in 2015 is still US$5,500 per tonne, but our low case scenario of US$5,150 per tonne looks more appropriate right now as negative sentiment surrounding China remains difficult to shake even with falling stocks, rising premiums and the likelihood of higher-than-expected imports.
“Fundamentally, copper is finding itself on an increasingly firmer footing, but it is the weight of bearish speculative money, not the fundamentals, that are determining prices, at least at the moment,” according to a report availed to the Daily Mail yesterday.
Yesterday, copper on the London Metal Exchange (LME) climbed as the United States (US) dollar eased in the wake of a weak US jobs report that pointed to a delayed interest rate rise, while holidays in top user China drained volumes from the market.
Sluggish demand growth in China pushed copper prices to six-year lows below US$5,000 a tonne in August and demand is expected to pick up only modestly in the fourth quarter amid ample supply, keeping a ceiling on prices.
Three-month copper on the LME rose 1.1 percent to US$5,154.50 a tonne, paring losses from the previous session. Prices fell 10.5 percent in the third quarter, the biggest quarterly loss in more than two years.
Commenting on the development, UBS in Hong Kong analyst Dominic Schnider said, “Looking at the numbers, last week was clearly bad for copper – medium and small enterprises in China are decelerating at a faster pace. For me, the story remains an unchanged negative for copper, given the macro-economic outlook.”


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