China Sees Surge in Copper Imports Amid Falling Inventories

China Sees Surge in Copper Imports Amid Falling Inventories

Imports Peak

Chinese copper imports soared to a ten-month high in October, according to recent customs data. The total intake of unwrought copper and related products reached 500,168 metric tons. This figure represents the highest level of imports since the previous December and a substantial 23.7% increase from October of the previous year.

Inventory and Demand Dynamics

The rise comes as internal copper stockpiles in China hit their lowest in 13 months. The Shanghai Futures Exchange reported a significant 85.6% drop from the March peak. The period of September to October traditionally experiences heightened demand due to a post-summer resumption of industrial activities and the consumer spending spike during the Golden Week holiday.

Stimulus Measures and Price Influence

China’s introduction of stimulus measures aimed at bolstering the economy has positively impacted the demand for copper. Concurrently, a decline in global copper prices encouraged import activity despite a third consecutive monthly price decline on the London Metal Exchange.

Premiums and Production

The Yangshan copper premium surged, indicating robust import demand, reaching its highest point since the previous November. Although October’s imports showed a 4.1% month-on-month increase, the overall year-to-date figures were still down by 6.7% compared to last year, largely due to sustained high levels of domestic production.

Ore Imports on the Rise

There was an 11.3% year-on-year increase in the import of copper ore and concentrate in October, with a 9.2% increase recorded for the first ten months of the year, underscoring China’s strong and growing demand for raw copper materials

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