SINGAPORE, Oct. 19 -- Copper rebounded in Asia on speculation a report in China will show economic growth in the world's largest metals consumer accelerated in the third quarter driven by the government's $586 billion stimulus package.
The National Bureau of Statistics report on Oct. 22 will probably show growth increased to 8.9 percent, according to a Bloomberg News survey of economists. China's economy expanded 7.9 percent in the second-quarter after growing 6.1 percent during the first three months of this year.
"Fabricators and manufacturers, like cable and tube makers, have been buying hand-to-mouth the whole year," said Li Jingyuan, Shanghai-based analyst at Haifu Futures Co. They are "beginning to accumulate inventory again now that their outlook for the economy, and hence demand, has improved," he said.
Copper for delivery in three months on the London Metal Exchange rose as much as 0.8 percent to $6,280 a metric ton, and was at $6,276 at 10:45 a.m. Singapore time. It fell as much as 1 percent earlier.
January-delivery copper on the Shanghai Futures Exchange gained as much as 1.2 percent to 49,360 yuan ($7,230) a ton and last traded at 49,290 yuan. The December-delivery contract climbed 0.3 percent to $2.8545 a pound on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange.
An expansion of global stockpiles may limit copper's rally, said He Ruiyan, head of research at Xiamen International Trade Futures Co.
Stockpiles of copper in Shanghai rose 12 percent to 100,217 tons last week, the highest level since Sept. 18. Inventories in London Metal Exchange warehouses climbed to a five-month high on Oct. 16. China's imports of copper and its products in September unexpectedly jumped from a seven-month low to 399,052 tons, according to data issued on Oct. 14.
Among other LME-traded metals, aluminum rose 0.5 percent to $1,914 a ton and nickel climbed 0.8 percent to $18,850 a ton. Zinc rose 0.3 percent to $2,060 a ton and lead climbed 0.8 percent to $2,221 a ton.