Copper futures gained on Friday after inventories dropped and President Bush presented a proposal to stimulate the slowing U.S. economy.

Copper inventories in warehouses tracked by the London Metal Exchange fell 2,325 metric tons, or 1.3 percent, to 183,225 tons which represents the longest decline in supplies in almost two months.

Copper futures for March rose 5.05 cents or 1.59 percent to $3.2325 a pound at 3:39 p.m. in the New York Mercantile Exchange Comex division. Copper for delivery in three months gained $150 or 2.1 percent to $7,141 a metric ton in the London Mercantile Exchange.

On Friday President George W. Bush proposed an economic stimulus package of tax incentives and rebates totaling up to $150 billion, saying it was needed as soon as possible'' to keep the economy growing.

On Thursday U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke told lawmakers the central bank would act aggressively to stave off a recession, signaling the possibility of further lending rate cuts. He said he would also support a quickly implemented stimulus package, which, according to analysts, could help copper prices to rise.

The New York Mercantile Exchange energy and commodity markets will close on Monday on behalf of Martin Luther King Jr. holiday. Markets will reopen on Tuesday.