Column: Signs of investor vertigo as copper hits record highs – by Andy Home (Yahoo/Finance – Reuters – May 11, 2021)

LONDON, May 11 (Reuters) – Copper continues to rewrite the record books. London Metal Exchange (LME) three-month metal punched through its previous record high of $10,190 a tonne, set in 2011, to touch $10,747.50 on Monday.

Copper sits at the epicentre of the broader rally unfolding across the commodities space, which super-bulls such as Goldman Sachs say is the start of a supercycle analogous to that of the 2000s.

The metal’s usage profile affords it exposure to global manufacturing recovery, post-pandemic rebuild and decarbonisation. Whether the world’s copper miners can meet that demand is a moot point, given chronic past underperformance and a lengthening list of supply threats.

Chile, the world’s largest copper producer, is facing both short-term disruption from labour negotiations and long-term disruption from a planned increase in mining royalties.

Such headlines inevitably add more fizz to an already heady bull cocktail, which has lured some funds into fresh bets on higher prices.

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