Copper prices hit a 19-month peak as increased risk appetite drove investors to the red metal. The biggest fear permeating the market in recent weeks has been the potential for fall-out from an economic collapse in Greece.
By Leia Michele Toovey- Exclusive to Copper Investing News Copper prices hit a 19-month peak as increased risk appetite drove investors to the red metal. The biggest fear permeating the market in recent weeks has been the potential for fall-out from an economic collapse in Greece. These fears were pacified this week; on Tuesday, Greece followed up Monday's seven-year syndicated bond deal with an announcement that it will re-open the 5.9 percent October 2022 government bond at an auction, to raise up to US$1.35 billion. Extra impetus for copper came by way of a weak greenback, and collapsing inventories. Stockpiles of copper in warehouses monitored by the London Metal Exchange fell for a 19th straight time, the longest slump since July. A falling dollar makes commodities priced in the currency cheaper for overseas buyers. The markets are anticipating important data out of the US. On Friday, non-farm payroll jobs data from the world's largest economy will be issued. However, the markets will be closed and the effects of the data will take until the following week to be felt. So far this year, the metal has climbed 5.6 percent and is on track for a fifth straight quarterly gain. Prices are being driven by increasing demand and a reduction in inventories as overall the global economic outlook trots down the path to recovery. Coupled with the lack of new copper projects coming on-line, the evidence is accumulating that the red metal is poised to hit the next platform en route to recovery. Data out of Chile highlighted that the earthquake did little to affect copper output. In fact, February copper output rose 3.8 percent compared to last year, touching 394,742 tonnes. The National Statistics Institute said the quake resulted in only minor damage to some mines and had marginal impact over output after some deposits halted operations briefly due to power disruptions. Daily production in February was 14,097 tonnes. In January, the South American country produced 13,678 tonnes a day.