When the U.S. Fed­eral Reserve stops printing $80 bil­lion a month to buy bonds, interest rates may jump, and that may stop the improve­ment in the U.S. housing industry and per­haps even trigger a reces­sion, said Jef­fery Born, a pro­fessor of finance at the D’Amore McKim School of Busi­ness at North­eastern University.

This fear has pushed all but the most flush or opti­mistic cor­po­ra­tions to side­lines, sug­gesting weak growth (if any) in man­u­fac­turing output for 2014, even if the end of QE isn’t announced this year,” he said.

In this envi­ron­ment, my out­look for copper is pretty gloomy: side­ways to down­ward price trends for the upcoming cal­endar year,” said Born.

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