Copper reached a six-week high in New York yesterday after China's new government backed urban development, a policy that stands to support demand in the world's biggest consumer of the metal.
China also will keep macroeconomic policies stable and expand domestic demand, the official Xinhua News Agency said.
The Copper Development Association says construction generates about 40 per cent of demand for the metal, used in pipes and wiring. An official manufacturing gauge for China, released on Saturday, reached a seven-month high last month.
"Chinese data has improved in the past couple of months, and the uncertainty of the new leadership structure is passing," said analysts at Australia & New Zealand Banking Group.
Copper for delivery in March added 0.5 per cent to US$3.6725 in early trading on the Comex in New York. Prices reached $3.6835, the highest level since October 19. Copper for delivery in three months rose 0.3 per cent to $8,053 a tonne on the London Metal Exchange.
Xinhua cited a statement released after top officials made their first assessment of the economy under new leader Xi Jinping. As many as 300 million people will move from China's countryside by 2030, to join 600 million already living in cities, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development estimates.
"Market participants are stocked up for the rest of 2012 and early 2013, with large players sitting on the sidelines and waiting for signs of a copper demand pickup in China," said Andrey Kryuchenkov, an analyst at VTB Capital in London.
Copper inventories monitored by the LME, down 33 per cent this year, dropped 0.1 per cent to 249,025 tonnes, daily exchange figures showed. Orders to withdraw the metal from warehouses declined for a 10th session out of 11 to 31,175 tonnes.
Aluminium, zinc, lead and nickel rose in London. Tin fell.