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Copper stumbles to 7-week low on China recovery concerns

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Shutterstock photo - - Copper futures fell to a seven-week low on Wednesday, after disappointing Chinese economic data fuelled concerns over the health of the world's second largest economy.

On the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange, copper for September delivery declined 0.51%, or 1.6 cents, to trade at $3.139 a pound during European morning hours.

Prices fell to a session low of $3.134 a pound earlier, the weakest level since June 25. A day earlier, copper futures lost 0.63%, or 2.0 cents, to settle at $3.154 a pound.

Futures were likely to find support at $3.123, the low from June 25 and resistance at $3.189, the high from August 12.

Official data released earlier showed that industrial production in China rose at an annualized rate of 9% in July, in line with forecasts and slowing from an increase of 9.2% a month earlier.

Fixed asset investment, which tracks construction activity, increased 17.0% in the January-July period, below expectations for a gain of 17.4% and slowing from 17.3% in the January-June period.

A separate report showed that Chinese retail sales rose by a smaller-than-forecast 12.2% last month, compared to a 12.4% gain in June.

Meanwhile, Chinese bank lending and money supply growth for July also came in below expectations, underlining concerns about slowing growth in the world's biggest consumer of the industrial metal.

Chinese new loans dropped to 385.2 billion yuan last month from 1.08 trillion yuan in June and missed forecasts of 780 billion yuan.

The broad M2 money supply rose 13.5% on year in July, compared to growth of 14.7% a month earlier and below forecast for a 14.5% increase.

China's total social financing aggregate, a broad measure of liquidity in the economy, fell to 273.1 billion yuan in July, the lowest monthly reading since October 2008.

Copper prices have been on a downward trend in recent sessions amid indications of a slowdown in demand from China, the world's largest consumer of the red metal.

Official trade data released August 8 showed that China's copper arrivals fell 2.9% month-on-month in July, declining for a third straight month.

Elsewhere on the Comex, gold for December delivery dipped 0.06%, or 80 cents, to trade at $1,309.80 a troy ounce, while silver for September delivery picked up 0.34%, or 6.8 cents, to trade at $19.97 an ounce.

Market players continued to monitor geopolitical developments from Ukraine and the Middle East. offers an extensive set of professional tools for the financial markets.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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