Copper prices have crossed $ 4,000 tonne mark for cash contracts and look set to cross $3,0000 per tonne for long term contracts. These are the highest levels since trading began on LME in 1986. With several plants shutdowns occurring in different parts of the world, the supply of copper is likely to remain tight. This will aggravate the global supply in shortage,which is at around 1m tonne. From the present rally Local copper producers are likely to gain. Copper spot prices closed last week at $4,074/tonne the highest level till date. Prices have appreciated nearly 30% since the beginning of 05. The International Copper Study Group predicts that the world renowned copper stocks will hit the lowest level in the past 6 years at 9,23,000 tonnes. Copper prices have been rising for the past 3 years. Some of the major global players of copper whose production has been affected recently include BHP Billion, Asarco,Falconbridge and Glencore. The total production short fall is estimated to be 2,50,000 tonnes, nearly 0.2% of the world production. Demand for the metal is high on account of growth in US demand and the continued demand from China . China remains the largest consumer of the metal owing to its projects for new
Housing ,factories and installation of electricity pylons. Sterlite Industries and Hindalco operate on Tc/Rc charges. Instead of the absolute price, the balance between supply and demand of copper concentrate in the market decides Tc/Rc charges.