GLOBAL COPPER WRAP: Low spot demand weighs on US, European copper premiums; Chinese buying interest yet to recover

A falling London Metal Exchange three-month copper price failed to tempt buyers to take on additional spot cargoes this week, with the sluggish activity causing spot cathode premiums in the United States and Europe to weaken.

At the same time, a closed arbitrage window and limited buying appetite in China kept Shanghai cif and in-warehouse copper premiums steady from a week ago.
  • Rotterdam copper premiums narrows downward in first move in nine months.
  • Southeast Asia the only market to see copper premiums rise this week.

Logistical constraints, high stocks send Rotterdam copper premium to lowest since Oct 2017

Market participants dealing in copper cathodes across Europe have been reporting a marked decline in spot market activity in recent weeks, with the outbreak of novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) across the region hampering the supply chain.
“It’s super quiet in Europe right now,” a Europe-based copper trader told Fastmarkets. “I’m not keen to do any [copper cathode] business right now. The logistics are just too tricky.”

Fastmarkets assessed the copper grade A cathode premium, cif Rotterdam at $40-45 per tonne on Tuesday March 17, narrowing downward by...


Julian Luk

Hassan Butt

Rijuta Dey Bera

Sally Zhang

March 18, 2020

06:15 GMT

London, New York, Shanghai