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Mark Hulbert: Why is Dr. Copper so worried about Mr. Market?

Dr. Copper has just detected something quite worrisome on Mr. Market’s medical chart, and in reaction the metal has dropped more than 5% since mid-February alone.

That’s alarming, given copper’s reputation of being able to forecast trend changes in the economy. Many in all seriousness believe that copper is such an accurate economic bellwether, it might as well have a Ph.D. in economics. Earlier this week, hedge fund manager Doug Kass alerted clients to copper’s recent correction as contradicting the “vigorous economic recovery thesis.”

I’m not so sure copper’s gyrations have the significance that investors presume. Try as I might when analyzing the historical record, I find no significant evidence that a falling copper price can foretell economic weakness.

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