New York Copper Market Tightens Again, Piling Pressure on Shorts – by Mark Burton and Jack Farchy (Bloomberg News – June 19, 2024)

(Bloomberg) — Spot copper prices are again trading at a steep premium to later-dated futures in New York, putting fresh pressure on holders of short positions after a historic squeeze last month.

The July-delivery Comex copper traded at a 7.4 cent-per-pound premium to the September contract, in a condition known as backwardation that typically signals a supply shortage. The spread traded in an unprecedented 29.25-cent backwardation last month, putting huge pressure on commodity traders and investors with short positions in the July contract.

The global copper market is comfortably supplied overall, and equivalent spot contracts in Shanghai and London are trading at deep discounts to futures. But inventories in Comex warehouses have fallen to a 15-year low, and last month’s squeeze has forced traders to scramble to find and ship the select brands of copper that can be delivered into the US to settle their exposure.

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