Copper headed for a 28-month low

On Friday, copper prices were on track to the worst weekly loss in 28 months, dragged by a strong dollar and weak demand outlook.

The red metal on the London Metal Exchange declined 1.95% to $6,986.00 per metric tonne. The contract was down 9.90% on a weekly basis, headed for its biggest drop since March 2020. At the same time, the US copper lost 1.59% to $3.16 per pound.

Accordingly, economic growth in top metals consumer China slowed down to 0.40% year-over-year. It came in lower than the anticipated 1.00% increase. In addition, the indicator decelerated from the previous upturn of 4.80%, weighing on copper prices.

The downturn came amid the widespread lockdown curb and record COVID cases that hit industrial activity and consumer spending.

Eventually, the most-traded copper on the Shanghai Futures Exchange dropped 3.40% to $7,971.65 per tonne. This movement marked the lowest level since November 2020.

Meanwhile, inflation in the United States skyrocketed to the highest level since 1981. This upsurge could trigger a jump in the interest rate hike decision this month. Correspondingly, this prospect could slow growth and push up the dollar.

At present, the USD currency hovered near its two-decade high. This would eventually make greenback-priced metals like copper more expensive to holders of other currencies.

Aluminum ticks up as Copper declines

Unlike copper, aluminum futures recovered 0.39% to $2,337.00 per metric ton. This movement came after the significant drop of 1.48% to $2,328.00 per metric ton yesterday.

Subsequently, Chinese primary aluminum production edged up 3.20% to 3.39 million tonnes in June from a year earlier. The surge came as high global prices spurred an increase in output.

Regulators in Beijing pledged to support local governments deliver property projects on time. This is the first sign they stepped up to end the market chaos. Previously, homebuyers threatened to stop mortgage payments on unfinished apartments.

Meanwhile, nickel followed the downward trend of copper prices, slipping 1.45% to $18,924.50 per metric tonne.

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