Copper futures fell for a second day this week after a report showed U.S. retail sales declined more than forecast in June, renewing concern that the economic recovery may falter.
Purchases decreased 0.5% last month, a second straight drop, the U.S. Commerce Department said today. Sales had been forecast to fall 0.3%, the median of 75 estimates in a Bloomberg News survey. Copper prices tumbled 17% in the second quarter, the first quarterly loss since 2008, on signs that the global economy was slowing.
"The retail numbers were a little disappointing," said Donald Selkin, the chief market strategist at National Securities Corp. in New York. "Copper is drifting right now, waiting for some more certainty."
Copper futures for September delivery lost 0.9 cent, or 0.3%, to $3.0085 a pound at 10:59 a.m. on the Comex in New York. Before today, prices fell 9.8% this year.
On the London Metal Exchange, copper for delivery in three months slumped $43, or 0.6%, to $6,642 a metric ton ($3.01 a pound).
Lead, zinc, nickel and tin also fell on the LME. Aluminum was up.
Copper Prices Drop
Source: Bloomberg, Millie Munshi (7/14/10)
"Copper futures fell for a second day this week."