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Do Copper Prices Lead the Broad Equity Market?

January 6, 2021 • Posted in Commodity Futures, Economic Indicators

Is copper price a reliable leading indicator of economic activity and therefore of future corporate earnings and equity prices? To investigate, we employ the monthly price index for copper base scrap (not seasonally adjusted) from the U.S.┬áBureau of Labor Statistics, which spans multiple economic expansions and contractions. Using monthly levels of the copper scrap price index and the S&P 500 Index during January 1957 through November 2020 (nearly 64 years), we find that: (more…)

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