May 16, 2017 / 5:48 AM / in 3 years

METALS-London copper slips, traders cut risk as China growth slows

 (Adds detail, updates with closing prices)
    By Melanie Burton
    MELBOURNE, May 16 (Reuters) - London copper fell on Tuesday
as worries about China's slowing economic growth and tighter
capital markets in the world's top metals consumer triggered
selling in metals. 
     China's growth took a step back in April after a
surprisingly strong start to the year, tapering off as
authorities clamped down on debt risks in an effort to stave off
a potentially damaging hit to the economy. 
    "All of the slowdown in key macro data was ... from
restructuring/reform and risk controls," said Argonaut
Securities in a report.
    "We think there is no chance of hard-landing in China as of
now. That said, as there are a lack of drivers for new demand
growth ahead ... commodity prices may fluctuate in a narrow
range," it said.
     "Positive catalysts are stronger-than-expected external
growth in Europe and emerging markets, and more supply side
reform in China."  
    * LME COPPER: London Metal Exchange copper had
dropped 0.7 percent to $5,576 a tonne by 0707 GMT, paring gains
from the previous session when it hit $5,637 which was the
highest in nearly two weeks. 
    * LME ZINC: LME zinc and lead also fell
around 1.5 percent to trade near their lowest for the year,
having recently broken below their 200-day moving averages,
sending a sell signal to chart-following funds. LME zinc volumes
surged to more than 5000 lots, nearly twice that of copper.
    * SHFE COPPER: Shanghai Futures Exchange copper
ended barely changed at 45,170 yuan ($6,555) a tonne. ShFE zinc
 and Shanghai lead fell 0.9 and 1.4 percent
    * CHINA DEBT: China's growth is set for its weakest patch
since the global financial crisis as authorities pull back on
the stimulus that helped the economy get off to an unexpectedly
strong start this year, and keep funds tight to deter risky
    * ALUMINIUM: A deepening global shortage of aluminium and an
improving outlook for Russian equities should make tycoon Oleg
Deripaska's En+ company attractive to investors seeking exposure
to emerging markets free of foreign exchange risks, its chief
told Reuters.
    * BHP: Activist investor Elliott Management upped the
pressure for strategic changes at BHP, on
Tuesday, calling for an independent review of the mining giant's
petroleum business.
    * ORICA: Orica Ltd, the world's No. 1 explosives
maker, beat forecasts on Tuesday with a 2.7 percent rise in its
half-year underlying profit, helped by cost cuts and higher
sales, and said demand from its mining customers was improving.
 BASE METALS PRICES                 0713 GMT         
 Three month LME copper                          5574
 Most active ShFE copper                        45160
 Three month LME aluminium                       1898
 Most active ShFE aluminium                     13965
 Three month LME zinc                          2530.5
 Most active ShFE zinc                          21310
 Three month LME lead                          2100.5
 Most active ShFE lead                          15715
 Three month LME nickel                          9150
 Most active ShFE nickel                        76600
 Three month LME tin                            19830
 Most active ShFE tin                          140910
 BASE METALS ARBITRAGE                               
 LME/SHFE COPPER                 LMESHFCUc3    257.51
 LME/SHFE ALUMINIUM              LMESHFALc3   -1289.4
 LME/SHFE ZINC                   LMESHFZNc3    350.24
 LME/SHFE LEAD                   LMESHFPBc3   -1579.7
 LME/SHFE NICKEL                 LMESHFNIc3   2009.41

($1 = 6.8921 Chinese yuan renminbi)

 (Reporting by Melanie Burton; Editing by Miral Fahmy and Joseph
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