As stock markets fall again, will metals follow?


Stock markets across the world tumbled yesterday as there seemed to be no end in sight to the poor economic data posted recently.

The FTSE was down 239 points (4.5 per cent lower) to 5092 at close yesterday. The Dow Jones closed 419 points down (3.7 per cent lower) at 10,991 while Asian markets were also falling. At 8:30am today, the FTSE had fallen further to 4,978.


Gold was a beneficiary as investors sought a safe haven. It was up to $1,865 an ounce.

There are fears that the world economy is falling back towards recession with Morgan Stanley saying that the US and European economies are “hovering dangerously close to recession”. Poor US manufacturing figures and disarray in the eurozone over the Greek bailout are all contributing to the fears.

On 3 August just before the first bout of stock market falls, copper was trading at $9,846 (£6,000) but yesterday was down to $8,828 (£5,343). With over $1,000 wiped off the value of copper since then, traders will be hoping the metal does not follow the same pattern. Copper often tracks the price of oil, which also continues to fall. US crude futures fell $2 to $80.38 this morning.

Compared to Wednesday, copper was down from the $8,895 (£5,382) seen then.

Aluminium was up to $2,404 (£1,455) from $2,383 (£1,442) seen on Wednesday. Alloy was priced at $2,270 (£1,374) on Thursday from $2,260 (£1,367) a day earlier.

Lead settled at $2,332 (£1,411) from $2,387 (£1,444) the day before. Nickel was at $21,575 (£13,058) compared to $21,650 (£13,099) on Wednesday.

Tin was priced at $23,895 (£14,463) from $24,400 (£14,763) a day earlier. Zinc settled at $2,185 (£1,322) from $2,190 (£1,325) the day before.

Steel was down to $560 (£339) from $565 (£342) on Wednesday.