China’s economy grew 3% last year, one of the weakest annual growth figures in nearly half a century. (Stock Image)
The copper price fell on Tuesday as weak economic data from China punctured a speculator-driven rally.
Copper for delivery in March fell 0.3% on the Comex market in New York, to $4.20 per pound, or $9,240 per tonne.
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Prices of the metal have surged 9% this month after China’s decision to end the zero-covid policy.
In the short term, however, Chinese consumption is weak and likely to remain so as the country heads into the Lunar New Year holidays next week.
China’s economy grew 3% last year, one of the weakest annual growth figures in nearly half a century, with factory output growing 1.3% year on year in December.
China’s population also fell for the first time in six decades, underlining its long-term economic challenges.
Economists expect China’s economy to pick up in the coming months.
“We are heading for higher (copper) prices this year, but this is a marathon, not a sprint,” said Saxo Bank analyst Ole Hansen, predicting a temporary pause or reversal of the rally.
(With files from Reuters)