Copper prices dropped to a 14-week low after a report showed demand for durable goods in August tumbled by a record in the U.S., the world’s second-biggest consumer of the metal.
The orders for items meant to last at least three years plunged more than 18 percent after surging almost 23 percent in the prior month, government data showed today. Aluminum, tin, nickel, lead and zinc dropped in London, while the dollar climbed to the highest since June 2010 against a basket of 10 currencies, eroding the investment appeal of commodities.
“That durable-goods report crushed the metals markets,” Phil Streible, a senior market strategist at RJO Futures in Chicago, said in a telephone interview. Copper for delivery in three months dropped 0.7 percent to settle at $6,695 a metric ton ($3.04 a pound) at 5:51 p.m. on the London Metal Exchange. Earlier, the price touched $6,676.75, the lowest since June 17. China is the top consumer.