London copper prices edged up on Thursday, buoyed by an uptick in equities and a slight pullback in the US dollar, although dismal demand outlook amid growing recession worries kept gains in check.
Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange was up 0.2% at $8,052 a tonne, as of 0228 GMT, while the most-traded September copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange lost 0.7% to 62,910 yuan ($9,178.72) a tonne.
Prices of copper, often used as an indicator of global economic health, have recouped nearly 16% from a 20-month low touched in mid-July, but are down 17% so far this year.
New orders for US-manufactured capital goods increased in July, but the pace slowed from the prior month, suggesting a moderate rebound in business spending this quarter.
Aluminum producer Speira GmbH is considering cutting production at its German smelter to 50% of total capacity in response to surging energy costs, Bloomberg News reported on Wednesday.
Asian share markets were broadly positive while the dollar was slightly weaker, with investors nervously awaiting the US Federal Reserve’s annual Jackson Hole conference for clues on how sharp future interest rate hikes might be.
The refined global copper market showed a 66,000 tonne deficit in June, compared with a 30,000 tonne deficit in May, the International Copper Study Group (ICSG) said in its latest monthly bulletin.
LME aluminum was flat at $2,428.50 a tonne, zinc added 0.6% to $3,533.50 a tonne, lead was up 0.6% at $1,985 a tonne.
ShFE nickel gained 0.5% to 171,520 yuan a tonne, tin lost 0.6% to 198,650 yuan a tonne, while aluminum eased 0.2% to 18,870 a tonne.
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