Copper declined to a two-week low in New York after Socialist Francois Hollande was elected president of France, prompting concerns that austerity efforts may be derailed, and U.S. payrolls rose by the least in six months.
July-delivery metal on the Comex fell as much as 1.5 percent to $3.6665 a pound, the lowest for the most active contract since April 24, and traded at $3.687 at 3:57 p.m. Shanghai time. August-delivery copper on the Shanghai Futures Exchange closed 1.2 percent lower at 57,590 yuan ($9,128) a metric ton. The London Metal Exchange is closed for a holiday.
“The elections in Europe indicate uncertainties in resolving Europe’s debt issues, which has led to a broad market reaction,” said Li Peng, an analyst at Guotai Junan Futures Co.
Hollande defeated Nicolas Sarkozy to be the first Socialist president in 17 years, and told his supporters “austerity isn’t inevitable,” after he got about 52 percent against about 48 percent for Sarkozy last night. His comments were echoed in Greece, where voters flocked to anti-bailout groups, leaving the two main parties a seat short of a majority if they govern together, an Interior Ministry projection showed.
U.S. payrolls climbed 115,000 in April, the smallest gain in six months, according to Labor Department data on May 4.
Net-long positions, or wagers on rising prices, held by funds were 15,582 futures and options contracts as of May 1, compared with 2,217 a week earlier, according to the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission.