September 28, 2017 / 7:08 AM / 2 years ago

METALS-Copper drifts lower ahead of quarter end, China holiday

 (Adds detail on China nickel, analyst quote; updates prices)
    By Melanie Burton
    MELBOURNE, Sept 28 (Reuters) - London copper eased on
Thursday after rising in the previous session. Prices are
underpinned by solid industrial profits in China that allayed
concerns about slowing growth and demand for metal but direction
was limited ahead of the end of the third quarter and before
China, the world's biggest user of industrial metals, shuts for
holidays next week. 
    "We do think the current weakness of copper represents a
nice opportunity to go long," said Managing Director Gianclaudio
Torlizzi of Italy-based commodity consultancy T-Commodity.
    
    FUNDAMENTALS
    * LME COPPER: London Metal Exchange copper edged up
0.2 percent to $6,428 a tonne by 0750 GMT, paring gains made in
the previous session. Prices have fallen in six of the last
seven sessions.
    * SHFE COPPER: Shanghai Futures Exchange (ShFE) copper
 edged up 0.5 percent to 50,620 yuan  ($7,594) a tonne.
    * NICKEL: ShFE nickel slid 1.6 percent to 83,270
yuan amid selling in steel and iron ore. Premiums for metal in
China bonded zones surged another $55 to $350, and are now up
$110 in two days, suggesting a party is urgently seeking metal.
NI-BMPBW-SHMET
    * LEAD: Lead open interest has surged to the highest since
last November at just shy of 130,000 lots, reflecting a rise in
investor interest in the metal as China appears increasingly
short, given lower concentrate imports and a string of plant
closures due to environmental inspections in the country. 
    * ZINC DOMINANT POSITION: One party holds a dominant
position in zinc between 50-80 percent of warrants, and more
than 90 percent of warrants and tom next, and warrants and cash
positions. <0#LME-WHC> <0#LME-WHT> <0#LME-WHL> 
    * U.S. ECONOMY: New orders for U.S.-made capital goods
increased more than expected in August and shipments maintained
their upward trend, pointing to underlying strength in the
economy despite an anticipated drag on growth from Hurricanes
Harvey and Irma.
    * U.S. MANUFACTURING: President Donald Trump said on
Wednesday an unnamed foreign leader told him at the United
Nations last week that the country would soon announce plans to
build or expand five automobile industry factories in the United
States.
    * U.S. TAX: Trump proposed on Wednesday the biggest U.S. tax
overhaul in three decades, calling for tax cuts for most
Americans, but prompting criticism that the plan favours
business and the rich and could add trillions of dollars to the
deficit.
    * CHINA CARS: China may join Britain and France in banning
new petrol and diesel cars from 2040 and could set an earlier
deadline, the secretary-general of the World Energy Council
(WEC) said.
    * CHINA ECONOMY: Profits at China's industrial companies
rose 24 percent in August from a year earlier, accelerating from
the previous month and helping to ease worries about slowing
economic growth.
    * MARKETS: The dollar and U.S. bond yields rose on Thursday
after President Donald Trump proposed the biggest U.S. tax
overhaul in three decades and as strong U.S. economic data added
to the case for a rate hike by the Federal Reserve later this
year.    
        
    PRICES    
  
 BASE METALS PRICES              0727 GMT         
 Three month LME copper                     6447.5
 Most active ShFE copper                     50620
 Three month LME aluminium                  2123.5
 Most active ShFE aluminium                  16305
 Three month LME zinc                         3115
 Most active ShFE zinc                       25680
 Three month LME lead                       2460.5
 Most active ShFE lead                       20645
 Three month LME nickel                      10310
 Most active ShFE nickel                     83500
 Three month LME tin                         20670
 Most active ShFE tin                       146200
                                                  
 BASE METALS ARBITRAGE                            
 LME/SHFE COPPER             LMESHFCUc3     398.24
 LME/SHFE ALUMINIUM          LMESHFALc3    -113.77
 LME/SHFE ZINC               LMESHFZNc3     848.68
 LME/SHFE LEAD               LMESHFPBc3        309
 LME/SHFE NICKEL             LMESHFNIc3    1928.94
 
($1 = 6.6656 Chinese yuan)

    
 (Reporting by Melanie Burton; Editing by Christian Schmollinger
and Amrutha Gayathri)
  
 
 
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