MCX Copper Tips for Today : Copper yesterday settled down by 1.61% at 605.3 as Chinas imports of unwrought copper and copper products fell for a third consecutive month to 512,332 tonnes in December 2020, marking a 8.7% drop from 561,310.7 tonnes in November and tanking to their lowest monthly level since May.
Imports of unwrought copper and copper products for the year came in at 6.68 million tonnes, customs data showed, up a third from 2019.
Chinas imports of copper concentrate, or partially processed ore, were 1.89 million tonnes last month, up 3% from 1.831 million tonnes in November, but were down by 5% from 1.928 million tonnes a year earlier.
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Copper scrap discounts in the United States rose in response to the strong Comex copper price, along with slowing demand as some mills finished purchasing scrap metal for the month.
China’s major copper smelters lifted cathode production by 9.3% in December from the previous month, while full-year output held steady in a 2020. Full-year production came in at 8.54 million tonnes, up 0.02% from 2019, as smelters quickly restored normal operations after a coronavirus-dominated first quarter.
While large producers like Jinchuan Group recorded strong output growth in 2020, smaller smelters saw declines amid tight mine supply and low treatment charges , which are currently at an eight-year low of $48.50 a tonne.