April 15, 2019 / 5:02 AM / 10 months ago

METALS-Copper edges up on China data, lower stockpiles

 (Updates prices)
    By Mai Nguyen
    SINGAPORE, April 15 (Reuters) - Copper prices advanced on
Monday, after data from China showed higher unwrought copper
imports in March, while declining inventories, concerns over a
supply deficit and hopes of a resolution to the U.S.-China trade
row also lent support.
    Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange rose
0.1 percent to $6,487 a tonne by 0747 GMT, while the most-traded
June copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange
ended up 0.4 percent at 49,400 yuan ($7,367.86) a tonne.
    China imported 391,000 tonnes of unwrought copper last
month, up 25.7 percent from the previous month and 26.5 percent
higher than a year earlier, data released on Friday showed.

    China's March copper concentrate imports were also higher
than the year-ago levels, at 1.77 million tonnes, but down from
an unusually strong February.
    "This squashed any concerns over soft demand post the
Chinese New Year holiday. Sentiment was further boosted by
strong credit and monetary data," ANZ said in a note.
    * LAS BAMBAS: Chinese miner MMG Ltd said that Las
Bambas mine in Peru has progressively restored critical supplies
and increased staffing levels over last week after indigenous
communities ended a more than two-month blockade of a key
    * STOCKS: Copper stocks in LME-approved warehouses fell for
a third straight day, by 2,000 tonnes to 192,425 tonnes,
according to exchange data released on Friday, while copper
inventories in warehouses tracked by the ShFE fell 5 percent
from a week ago to 245,178 tonnes. MCUSTX-TOTAL CU-STX-SGH
    * TRADE: U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said on
Saturday a U.S.-China trade agreement would go "way beyond"
previous efforts to open China's markets to U.S. companies and
hoped that the two sides were "close to the final round" of
    * ARIZONA: Rio Tinto Ltd said it would invest an
extra $302 million to develop its Resolution copper project in
the U.S. state of Arizona, as it looks to expands output to meet
the lucrative market for new energy vehicles.
    * ANTO: Copper will face more disruptions this year than in
2018, as labour strife, extreme weather and unexpected project
delays will knock as much as a million tonnes off 2019
production, Chilean miner Antofagasta's chief executive
    * TRAFI/NYRSTAR: Swiss-based global commodities trader
Trafigura is set to take control of Belgian metals producer
Nyrstar after agreeing a financial restructuring with
its creditors.
    * CHINA ECONOMY: China's first-quarter economy growth likely
cooled to the weakest pace in at least 27 years, a Reuters poll
showed, but a flurry of measures to boost domestic demand may
have put a floor under slowing activity in March.
    * For the top stories in metals and other news, click       
 BASE METALS PRICES                      0446 GMT
 Three month LME copper                    6500.5
 Most active ShFE copper                    49550
 Three month LME aluminium                   1864
 Most active ShFE aluminium                 13880
 Three month LME zinc                      2914.5
 Most active ShFE zinc                      22515
 Three month LME lead                        1934
 Most active ShFE lead                      16385
 Three month LME nickel                     13000
 Most active ShFE nickel                   101250
 Three month LME tin                        20775
 Most active ShFE tin                      147990
 BASE METALS ARBITRAGE                           
 LME/SHFE COPPER             LMESHFCUc3    299.69
 LME/SHFE ALUMINIUM          LMESHFALc3   -243.78
 LME/SHFE ZINC               LMESHFZNc3    -11.95
 LME/SHFE LEAD               LMESHFPBc3   1294.57
 LME/SHFE NICKEL             LMESHFNIc3   5023.51

($1 = 6.7048 Chinese yuan)

 (Reporting by Mai Nguyen; additional reporting by Tom Daly in
BEIJING; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)
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