Japan Official Copper Price Hits 930,000 yen/t

Nippon Mining & Metals announced on Monday the firm increased the official copper ingot price to 930,000 yen per tonne for domestic shipment in May, raised by 20,000 yen from the end of April. The official price marked the record again after the previous revision on April 27.Japanese official price was raised again thanks to continuously surging copper markets at overseas. Overseas copper markets almost followed the movement of crude oil price during Japanese holiday period in last week. In the first half of last week, copper spot price at London Metal Exchange (LME) decreased to below US$ 7,300 per tonne and future price below US$ 7,100. Copper price at New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX) also declined to less than 342 cents per pound temporarily. However, in the last half of the week, speculative purchasing became strong again when crude oil price turned to the increase and geopolitical risk increased with suspicion of Iranian nuclear development. On Friday both LME copper settlement price and NYMEX copper spot price hit the records at US$ 7,810 per tonne and 359.70 cents per pound respectively.The telegraphic transfer selling (TTS) rate was 112.87 yen per one US dollar on Monday. The exchange rate of yen sharply became stronger against US dollar, at the same level as September 2005, thanks to the official comment by Ben Shalom Bernanke, Federal Reserve Chairman. Japanese official copper price was revised up even under the stronger yen.Mitsui Mining & Smelting announced on Monday the firm decreased official zinc ingot price by 5,000 yen to 434,000 yen per tonne for domestic shipment in May. Official price was revised down for the first time since March 9, when foreign exchange rate of yen rapidly became stronger against US dollar, though overseas zinc market still maintains increasing.