Chile: Copper prices fall in October; Chilean copper supply rises in September
Copper averaged USD 7941 per metric ton in October, down 4.0% from September’s price. On 31 October, the commodity traded at USD 8029 per metric ton, 2.2% lower than on the same day of the previous month. Meanwhile, Chilean copper production increased 4.1% year on year in September, rising for the third straight month and marking the largest increase since March 2020.
Copper prices are forecast to rise in the coming quarters as industrial activity in China improves, supported by recent stimulus policies. Further government stimulus in the Asian giant and the path of monetary policy globally are key factors to monitor on the demand side. On the supply side, Chilean copper output will likely be fairly stagnant in 2023 as a whole relative to 2022 amid declining ore grades and water shortages in H1. Chilean copper output should get a boost next year, thanks to the completion of new mining projects and as El Niño brings rains and thus eases water shortages. Higher taxes on the mining sector as a result of the recently approved mining royalty could temper investment going forward though.