NEW YORK The global refined copper market deficit widened to 183,000 tonnes in April from an 84,000-tonne deficit the previous month, according to preliminary data from the International Copper Study Group.
The global deficit for the first four months of the year totaled 389,000 tonnes vs. a 245,000-tonne surplus in the same period last year.
World refined copper usage rose to 1.99 million tonnes in April from 1.95 million tonnes in March. Apparent demand in China jumped 31 percent from a year earlier based on a 77-percent increase in net imports. Apart from China, world consumption of copper grew 4.5 percent, driven by an 11-percent gain in the European Union and a 15-percent increase in Japan.
World refined copper production dropped to 1.81 million tonnes in April from 1.87 million tonnes in March. A 13-percent increase in Chinese copper production was partly offset by a 3.5-percent drop in Chilean output.
Stocks of refined copper in Chinese bonded warehouses were estimated to have increased by 180,000 tonnes over the first four months of 2014 compared with the end of last year but were 280,000 tonnes below the first four months of 2013.