The copper market has moved sharply higher this morning, but prices have only reached their highest levels since January 25th. LME Copper Stocks were measured at 397,275 tons, up another 2,575 tons. LME Copper stocks have now increased during 14 of the last 20 days. Evidence of rising physical copper production from several copper miners overnight was also seen as a negative factor for the market. However, one of those miners also suggested that up to 90% of its 2011 copper production was already contracted, which some traders feel highlights ideas that copper supply is still pretty tight. The Japanese Trade surplus during December was 728 billion Yen, with double-digit gains on both the export and import side on a year-on-year basis, which may project stronger levels of Japanese industrial copper consumption over the first half of this year.
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