Glencore gets lift from coal and copper

GLENCORE International said third-quarter trading in its marketing arm was “solid” as it posted a jump in metals output and announced it had become an oil producer yesterday.

The trading update calmed the jitters of some investors, who feared the company could be hit by the market turmoil that triggered a quarterly loss at rival group Noble.

Production at Glencore’s key operations was in line or marginally ahead of analyst expectations, with copper up 40 per cent over the nine months, zinc up 19 per cent and coal 18 per cent higher.

“Despite the financial market uncertainty and some weather and equipment-driven disruptions, Glencore’s overall healthy operational and financial performance has continued through 2011,” it said.

While miners have said for months underlying demand was holding up in the face of economic turbulence, that tone has been changing -- BHP Billiton told shareholders yesterday that customers were starting to face tougher credit conditions.

Glencore, however, signaled its marketing arm was holding up in volatile markets. The firm is due to announce its full results on 5 March.