Copper, iron ore prices tank as China virus spreads
Mining News Pro - Copper and iron ore prices were hammered on Thursday as the deadly coronavirus outbreak in China added to worries about slowing economic growth in the globe’s top commodities importer.
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According to Mining News Pro - Six consecutive down days in New York saw copper for delivery in March wipe out the year’s gains, falling to a seven-week low of $2.771 a pound ($6,110 a tonne) in New York.

Iron ore lost 3.4% on the day with benchmark  Northern China import prices for 62% Fe fines tracked by Fastmarkets MB pegged at $93.44 a tonne.

China  imports more than half the world’s copper and controls more than three-quarters of the seaborne iron ore trade.  

Full year imports of refined copper fell six% in 2019, but concentrate imports surged to 22 million tonnes an 11.6% gain on record imports the year before.  Chinese imports of iron ore topped 1 billion tonnes for the third year in a row in 2019.

In a note, Capital Economics said the cooling property construction is likely to weigh on economic activity in the coming quarters:

  But with external demand starting to stabilise, the slowdown should be gradual, as long as the coronavirus outbreak is contained.


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