Jun 11, 2012 (Dow Jones) -- Societe Generale Monday cut its 2012 price outlook on a range of metals, including copper and gold, mirroring similar moves by other banks.
The bank now expects copper to average $8,000 a metric ton this year, compared to $8,220/ton forecast previously. The bank also reduced its forecast for copper in the third quarter to $7,500/ton from $8,200/ton previously and its fourth quarter forecast to $7,975/ton from $8,300/ton.
"The precarious situation in Europe and scope for instability to spread wider afield, together with slowing growth in the U.S. and China, all add up to form a significant headwind to the copper market," said Societe Generale analyst Robin Bhar.
Societe Generale also reduced its outlook on gold prices, cutting its 2012 average price forecast for the yellow metal to $1,700 a troy ounce from $1,810/oz previously in reflection of the metal's recent weakness. The bank does, however, expect gold to challenge $1,800/oz "before the end of the year," particularly if the U.S. Federal Reserve implements a further round of quantitative easing.
In the third quarter, Societe Generale sees gold averaging $1,700/oz compared to $1,900/oz earlier forecast and in the fourth quarter it forecasts an average gold price of $1,760/oz, down from $1,925/oz.