Copper is poised for its biggest monthly advance since April last year, as investors bet China may shift from Covid-Zero policies and boost demand in the top metal-consuming economy.
Prices have increased about 8% on the London Metal Exchange in November, snapping seven months of losses. China is pushing for greater vaccination of the elderly, driving speculation about a further easing of Covid-Zero rules that have placed a heavy toll on the economy.
Further aiding bullish sentiment, the country on Friday announced a plan to reduce reserve requirements at banks to boost money supply. This week, authorities relaxed rules on developers selling shares, adding to measures aimed at ramping up liquidity in the real-estate sector.
Still, China’s Covid situation, coupled with the domestic stimulus and tight physical supplies, will increase volatility in copper prices, Chaos Ternary Research Institute said in a note on Wednesday.
Copper was steady at $8 045 a ton on the LME as of 8:30 a.m. local time, while zinc and lead were also on track for monthly gains. Iron ore was little changed at $99.80 a ton and is up around 27% this month, putting it on course for the strongest monthly advance recorded on the Singapore Exchange.