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Top 20 Stories of 2021: #9

Top 20 Stories of 2021: #9

EVERY WEEKDAY FOR THE REST OF THE YEAR, TED MAGAZINE IS COUNTING DOWN THE TOP 20 STORIES OF 2021. BELOW, THE #9 MOST-VIEWED STORY OF THE YEAR, ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED ON APRIL 15, 2021.

 


 

Copper Prices Continue to Rise

As one analyst at Goldman Sachs puts it, “Copper is the new oil.”

With worldwide demand growing, predictions for lower supply, and the future potential for clean energy initiatives, the expectation is for copper prices to not only remain much higher this year, but throughout the decade.

Looking at a one-year cycle, copper reached it’s lowest price on April 20, 2020, when it sold for $2.25 a pound. The price peaked most recently in late February, when it reached $4.33 a pound, and as of Thursday, April 15 was selling for $4.19 a pound. Analysts with Goldman Sachs believe copper demand will rise by as much as 900% by 2030, while production will remain fairly similar to what it is right now, meaning the price will continue to rise over the next 8 and a half years, and could increase by more than 60% in the next four years.

There is also a concern about copper inventories for the rest of 2021, especially with China increasing the amount of copper it plans to import over the next 7 months. One analyst believe inventories will be the mid-2000’s, when there were strong concerns about availability.

If green technologies like solar and wind power along with electric vehicles continue to grow, copper prices will rise with them. One expert says it could become a $16 trillion dollar investment in green-focused infrastructure projects.

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