Weak US Data, Dollar Weigh On Copper Futures

Industry News 08:51:34AM Feb 15, 2012 Source:SMM

Feb 14, 2012 NEW YORK (Dow Jones)--Copper futures fell Tuesday as disappointing U.S. economic data sapped investor appetite for economically sensitive assets and a stronger dollar added to pressure on prices.

The most actively traded contract, for March delivery, settled down 2.50 cents, or 0.7%, at $3.8145 a pound on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Weaker-than-expected U.S. retail sales data set a sour mood early on, with copper futures keeping in negative territory throughout the day. January U.S. retail sales rose 0.4% from December, falling well short of forecasts of a 0.9% increase.

"This is the third month in a row of weak retail sales. This economy is a day to day thing. One day paints a rosy picture and the next [not]," said Bob Haberkorn, senior commodities broker at RJO Futures.

Copper prices are sensitive to downbeat economic news as the metal has broad applications in manufacturing and construction and demand tends to wane when business activity slows down.

Copper futures also faced pressure from a stronger dollar, as the dollar-denominated asset appears more expensive and tends to fall out of favor with investors who use other currencies when the dollar rallies.

The ICE Dollar Index was recently up 0.5% at 79.479.

Copper had edged higher in pre-market trading on reports showing German economic expectations had turned positive in February for the first time since May 2011, according to the Center for European Economic Research, or ZEW.

Copper settlements (ranges include electronic and pit trading):
Dec $3.2665; up/down 2.75 cents; Range $3.2635-$3.3180
Mar $3.2735; up/down 2.70 cents; Range $3.2580-$3.3380

 

Weak US Data, Dollar Weigh On Copper Futures

Industry News 08:51:34AM Feb 15, 2012 Source:SMM

Feb 14, 2012 NEW YORK (Dow Jones)--Copper futures fell Tuesday as disappointing U.S. economic data sapped investor appetite for economically sensitive assets and a stronger dollar added to pressure on prices.

The most actively traded contract, for March delivery, settled down 2.50 cents, or 0.7%, at $3.8145 a pound on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Weaker-than-expected U.S. retail sales data set a sour mood early on, with copper futures keeping in negative territory throughout the day. January U.S. retail sales rose 0.4% from December, falling well short of forecasts of a 0.9% increase.

"This is the third month in a row of weak retail sales. This economy is a day to day thing. One day paints a rosy picture and the next [not]," said Bob Haberkorn, senior commodities broker at RJO Futures.

Copper prices are sensitive to downbeat economic news as the metal has broad applications in manufacturing and construction and demand tends to wane when business activity slows down.

Copper futures also faced pressure from a stronger dollar, as the dollar-denominated asset appears more expensive and tends to fall out of favor with investors who use other currencies when the dollar rallies.

The ICE Dollar Index was recently up 0.5% at 79.479.

Copper had edged higher in pre-market trading on reports showing German economic expectations had turned positive in February for the first time since May 2011, according to the Center for European Economic Research, or ZEW.

Copper settlements (ranges include electronic and pit trading):
Dec $3.2665; up/down 2.75 cents; Range $3.2635-$3.3180
Mar $3.2735; up/down 2.70 cents; Range $3.2580-$3.3380