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Refined copper market swings into surplus

Global – Secondary copper production from scrap increased by 3.5% worldwide in the opening eight months of this year – from 2.543 million tonnes in January-August 2014 to 2.636 million tonnes.

With primary production climbing around 1% to 12.295 million tonnes, total refined output of the metal amounted to 14.931 million tonnes for a 1.6% gain over 2014, according to the latest statistics released by the International Copper Study Group (ICSG). Having posted a deficit of 461 000 tonnes in the first eight months of 2014, the refined copper market swung into surplus in the same period this year, with usage falling 2% to 14.862 million tonnes to give a global excess of 69 000 tonnes.

China’s apparent demand was around 0.5% higher but consumption slid in the EU and Japan by, respectively, 5% and 7%. Increases of around 2% were recorded both in Africa and the Americas. World refinery capacity utilisation fell to 81% in the opening eight months of this year from 81.5% in the corresponding period of 2014, notes the ICSG.

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