SINGAPORE, Sept 11 (Reuters) – Copper dipped for a second session on Tuesday as an intensifying trade war between Washington and Beijing raised concerns over demand for industrial metals in top consumer China.
Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange was down 0.1 percent at $5,906 a tonne, as of 0419 GMT, while the most-traded copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange added 0.4 percent to 47,830 yuan ($6,966.72) a tonne.
RESPONSE: China will respond if the United States takes any new steps on trade, the foreign ministry said on Monday, after U.S. President Donald Trump warned he was ready to slap tariffs on virtually all Chinese imports into the United States.
SURPLUS: China’s trade surplus with the United States widened to a record in August even as its export growth slowed slightly, an outcome that could push Trump to turn up the heat on Beijing.
TARIFFS: “The chances of President Trump reacting (to surplus) were a 100 percent, and in an interview on Airforce One he raised the prospect of triggering the additional $200 billion of tariffs with a further $267 billion in waiting,” Malcolm Freeman, director of Kingdom Futures, wrote in a note.
IMPACT: Wood Mackenzie estimates the expansion of the tariff list could raise the impact to around 1 percent of total Chinese copper demand, as many copper intensive goods are included in the extended list.
COPPER: China is the world’s largest consumer of copper, accounting for nearly half of global demand estimated at about 24 million tonnes this year.
IMPORTS: China’s copper imports fell 6.7 percent from a month ago to 420,000 tonnes in August, data showed.
HOUSING: Home prices and property investment in China are expected to rise more this year than first thought, as tight controls in big cities continue to push buyers into less-regulated smaller markets, a Reuters poll showed.
ECONOMY: The pick-up could offer much-needed support to China’s slowing economy as the United States ratchets up tariffs on Chinese goods, though policy makers are likely to remain keenly aware of the risk of property bubbles.