Zinc posts longest streak of gains in two years

Zinc rose for a seventh session in its longest rally in almost two years, while copper and other industrial metals advanced as an increase in U.S. factory orders helped boost demand prospects.

Zinc, used for rustproofing steel in everything from auto bodies to suspension bridges, is outperforming other metals as banks from Goldman Sachs Group Inc. to Macquarie Group Ltd. anticipate gains on prospects for a shortage. Bookings at U.S. factories rose 1.9 percent in April, up from 1.7 percent in March, with durable-goods orders gaining, government data Friday showed.

“There’s a lot of bullish things going for zinc, copper, aluminum — all the stuff used in durable goods,” Peter Thomas, a senior vice president at Zaner Group LLC, a metals broker in Chicago, said in a telephone interview.