Not surprisingly, September copper prices have clawed out a somewhat impressive start to the Friday US trade. September copper has taken out the prior 4 trading session highs in the early action on what seemed to be Chinese data that wasn't as weak as some expected. Therefore economic sentiment is improved slightly, but there doesn't seem to be a sense that really positive economic developments are set to flood the headlines directly ahead. Nonetheless the Asian copper market was sharply higher overnight after the Chinese GDP slowed, but didn't rekindle concerns of a hard landing in that economy. On the other hand, copper prices were cheered by positive Italian debt auction results and also from stronger than expected UK Construction Spending results. On the other hand, a rise in weekly Shanghai copper stocks of 5,691 tons has probably served to curtail the initial gains in US copper prices today. In other news that might have held back copper prices, Kazakhstan announced an increase in copper production, but the market currently seems to be primarily interested in demand prospects and not on modest changes in supply flows. LME copper stocks overnight rose by 300 tons to stand at 251,675 tons.