Copper hit a record price on the London Metal Exchange Tuesday after topping $9,000 per tonne for the first time ever in the pre-market session.

A combination of factors, including the Euro strength, short coverings and protracted speculation about exchange traded funds sparked the rally, traders said.

Three month copper closed at $8,986 per tonne in the LME’s second ring compared with an opening price of $8,790 per tonne.

The red metal hit a high of $9,044 per tonne, with the low at $8,717 per tonne. Copper stocks in LME listed warehouses fell 1,000 tonnes to 351,375 tonnes.

I think it is technical covering; gold and silver made new highs overnight and the strength of the Euro, said a Category II trader.

Market participants should expect a wave of profit taking and future margins increases, a second Category II trader said in a note. “Buying the dip just entered a whole new uncharted level of risk” he said.

Excerpts from American Metal Market. December 8, 2010