Tuesday, December 5

Base metals fall on economic worries, strong dollar

Article content

BEIJING — Prices of base metals drifted lower on Wednesday amid growing concerns over the performance of major economies and as a strong US dollar made it less attractive to buy greenback-priced commodities.

Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange was down 1.1% to $8,014.50 a tonne by 0154 GMT, extending losses from the previous session and reaching a near six-month low.

Article content

The most-traded July copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange fell 1.3% to 63,830 yuan ($9,234.53) a tonne.

Article content

Demand outlook has darkened for the metal used widely in construction, power and transportation sectors, as China’s economic recovery falters.

The dollar held steady on Wednesday after hitting a two-month high in the previous session, amid a lack of progress in talks over increasing the US debt limit.

The global refined copper market registered a 2,000-tonne surplus in March, compared with a 196,000-tonne surplus in the previous month, the International Copper Study Group (ICSG) said in its latest monthly bulletin released on Tuesday.

The Peruvian unit of Chinese firm Chinalco should start construction on its delayed $1.3 billion expansion project at the Toromocho copper mine in southern Peru by the end of June, the division’s executive said on Tuesday.

LME aluminum was down 0.5% at $2,216.50 a tonne, zinc dropped 2.1% to $2,322.50, and nickel nudged 0.3% lower to $20,990, while tin climbed 0.3% to $24,380.

SHFE aluminum eased 1.7% to 17,725 yuan a tonne, zinc fell 3.5% to 19,350 yuan, lead shed 0.2% to 15,280 yuan, nickel slid 1.4% to 164,020 yuan, while nickel gained 0.1% at 196 ,170 yuan.

For the top stories in metals and other news, click or

($1 = 6.9121 yuan) (Reporting by Siyi Liu and Dominique Patton; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)