Global copper smelting activity showed a slight increase in May following the improvements in the previous month according to the latest Savant data from Earth-i.
The natural supply response to an explosive price rally for refined copper became evident in April’s data and continued in May which led to copper prices being consolidated, according to Guy Wolf, analytics head at Marex, which partners with Earth-i to analyze this data.
The global smelting activity dispersion index calculated by the platform averaged 49.4 in May from 43.6 in the previous month, suggesting a return to the regular levels after March’s record lows. South American readings were the highest for May at 59.2 moving from 50 in the previous month.
China’s index increased to its highest since January at 48.9 but experienced a decline within the month’s maintenance period. Likewise, Asian countries, apart from China, recorded activity levels at 51.5, a significant increase from March, but softened as the month progressed.
North America has recorded the slowest recovery, registering an index of 38.9 in May. Although this figure is above YTD lows, it is significantly lower than the region’s long-run average of 50. Readings for Europe showed similarities to North America, at 45.7 in May, a significant increase when compared to March’s lows and June’s early reading suggests stronger readings are to follow.