Bloomberg News

Copper Rises as China’s Reserve Cut May Fuel Growth: LME Preview

February 20, 2012

Feb. 20 (Bloomberg) -- Copper climbed in London after China, the world’s largest buyer of the metal, lowered the bank reserve requirement by half a percentage point, fueling speculation about more cuts that may boost demand for metals.

Market News:

-- European officials attempting to fend off the euro area’s first sovereign default will try to settle remaining disputes today as they close in on a 130 billion-euro ($170 billion) Greek bailout. {NSN LZNRUO0YHQ0X <GO>}

-- China is seen making more cuts to banks’ reserve requirements to fuel lending and sustain economic growth as the housing market cools and Europe’s sovereign-debt crisis weighs on exports. {NSN LZOC0C6K50YL <go>}

-- Thailand’s economy shrank more than economists estimated as the worst floods in almost 70 years disrupted output by manufacturers from Western Digital Corp. to Honda Motor Co., putting pressure on policy makers to aid growth. {NSN LZODHG1A1I4I <GO>}

-- Japan posted a record trade deficit in January as the yen’s strength and weaker global demand eroded manufacturers’ profits and slowed the nation’s recovery from last year’s earthquake and tsunami. {NSN LZO9186S9729 <GO>}

-- Standard and Poor’s affirmed Japan’s sovereign-debt rating at AA- while maintaining a negative outlook and warning that a downgrade is likely if medium-term growth prospects weaken. {NSN LZOEW26K50XS <go>}

-- Spain’s debt load is set to double from where it was when Europe’s sovereign debt crisis began, eroding the economic advantages that distinguished it from the region’s periphery and helped shield it from Greek contagion. {NSN LZJO0V1A1I4R <go>}

-- Hedge funds increased commodity bets to the highest in almost five months on signs that a rescue plan for Greece and faster U.S. growth will buoy demand as supplies shrink for everything from soybeans to copper. {NSN LZOCYA6K50XS <go>}

-- China’s January home prices recorded their worst performance in at least a year, with none of the 70 cities monitored by the government posting gains as Premier Wen Jiabao reiterated his determination to maintain property curbs. {NSN LZM7R31A74E9 <go>}

Metals News:

-- Japan’s copper wire and cable shipments declined 1.2 percent in January from a year earlier as demand from the power and electric machinery industries dropped, an industry group said. {NSN LZO88B0D9L36 <GO>}

-- Copper futures, which have fallen for two straight weeks, may decline 5 percent further by March, according to technical analysis by PFGBest. {NSN LZNVIB6KLVR5 <go>}

-- Rio Tinto Group, the world’s second-biggest iron ore exporter, will invest $518 million for the first driverless long-distance trains to haul the commodity from its Western Australia mines to ports, boosting efficiency. {NSN LZMMUY1A1I4H <go>}

Metals Prices:

--Editors: Claudia Carpenter, Ana Monteiro

To contact the reporter on this story: Claudia Carpenter in London at ccarpenter2@abloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Claudia Carpenter at ccarpenter@bloomberg.net.


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