The preliminary Purchasing Managers’ Index from HSBC Holdings Plc and Markit Economics in November was 50, below the median estimate of 50.2 in a Bloomberg News survey of analysts. A reading above 50 indicate expansion. Before easing, the dollar reached a five-year high against a basket of 10 currencies on speculation the Federal Reserve is moving closer to raising U.S. interest rates.
“The Chinese numbers are adding pressure on the base- metals complex,” Mike Dragosits, a senior commodity strategist at TD Securities in Toronto, said in a telephone interview. “The dollar’s strength continues to act against commodities.”
Copper futures for March delivery declined 0.5% to $3.017 a pound at 10:53 a.m. on the Comex in New York. Through yesterday, the price fell 11% this year.
On the London Metal Exchange, copper for delivery in three months dropped 0.3% to $6,666 a metric ton ($3.02 a pound).
Nickel rose as much as 1.7% to $16,425 a ton, the highest since Oct. 15. Yesterday, the metal jumped 3.2% after Indonesia said a ban on exports of unprocessed ore remains in place, reinforcing concern that global demand is set to exceed supplies. Through yesterday, the price jumped 16% this year.
Aluminum and tin gained in London, while zinc and lead dropped.