Copper climbed for the first time in four days as economic data from the U.S. to Japan added to signs of a global economic recovery, boosting prospects for metal demand. Aluminum and zinc also advanced.
Copper for delivery in three months increased 0.3 percent to $8,017.50 a metric ton on the London Metal Exchange at 11:10 a.m. in Seoul. The metal is 1.1 percent higher this year, extending a 4.4 percent gain last year, on bets that economic recovery in China, the biggest buyer, will increase demand.
“We expect copper to be amongst the better performers in the base metals space in 2013,” Australia & New Zealand Banking Group Ltd. analysts including Mark Pervan, wrote in a report today. “Our expectations for a recovery in China and improving sentiment in the U.S. will underpin stronger demand and push prices to $9,000 by year end.”
The Commerce Department yesterday said that retail sales in the U.S. climbed 0.5 percent in December, the most in three months and exceeding the 0.2 percent forecast in a Bloomberg survey of economists. Japan’s machinery orders rose more than expected in November.
China’s exports rose more than forecast last month and a broad measure of credit surged 28 percent, helping the nation’s new leaders sustain a pickup in economic growth after a seven- quarter slowdown.
Copper for April delivery gained 0.6 percent to 58,040 yuan ($9,335) a ton on the Shanghai Futures Exchange. Copper futures for March delivery rose 0.2 percent to $3.6435 a pound on the Comex in New York.
On the LME, lead also rose, while nickel and tin were little changed.
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