Copper price records 3pc rise

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SUN REPORTER writes

@SunZambian     

COPPER price has scored a 2.5 percent gain this week, its biggest weekly increase since the week ended March 29.

According to Barclays Bank Zambia daily market update, the red metal has been buoyed partly by strike action at Chile’s Codelco, the world’s largest copper producer.

LME copper ended down 0.03% at $5,971 a tonne after hitting a near one-month high of $6,027 on Thursday.

The same was true for gold whose prices climbed to a near six-year high on Friday after the U.S. Federal Reserve indicated earlier this week that it could cut interest rates as early as July, prompting a sharp fall in the dollar and U.S.

Treasury yields. Spot gold was up 0.4% at $1,392.81 per ounce as of 0128 GMT, after hitting its highest since Sept. 5, 2013 at $1,395.13.

The bank has further reported that Oil prices rose on Friday, with Brent crude heading for its first weekly gain in five weeks on tensions in the Middle East after Iran shot down a U.S. military drone and on hopes for a drop in U.S. interest rates that may stimulate global growth.

Brent crude was up 39 cents, or 0.6%, at $64.84 a barrel by 0034 GMT.

On the local scene Barclays reported that the Zambian Kwacha weakened against the dollar on Friday, reversing most of its gains made earlier in the week mainly on the back of a build-up in corporate demand.

This saw the local unit close at K12.900/12.950 per dollar on the bid and offer respectively, 10 Ngwee lower than its opening level of K12.800/12.850.

It reported that in the absence of healthy dollar inflows, the Kwacha is likely to trade on the back foot in the near term.

 On Money Market the bank reported that  on Friday, the cost of borrowing funds on the interbank was little changed at 10.32% from 10.31%.

The liquidity levels increased to K930.37 Million from K362.91 Million with the volumes of funds traded on the interbank dropping to K396.50 Million from K486.00 seen on Thursday. 

The local markets where relatively unchanged on Friday following the Treasury Bill auction that was held on Thursday last week.

In neighbouring South Africa’s rand weakened against the dollar in early trade on Friday, as markets digested President Cyril Ramaphosa’s state of the nation address which some analysts said lacked detail on how he plans to fix the ailing economy.

 At 0640 GMT, the rand traded at 14.3800 per dollar, 0.2% weaker than its New York close on Thursday.

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