September 19, 2017 / 5:31 AM / 3 years ago

METALS--London metals steady as traders await cues after Fed meeting

 (Updates prices)
    By Melanie Burton
    MELBOURNE, Sept 19 (Reuters) - London metals traded little
changed on Tuesday as traders are awaiting the outcome of the
U.S. Federal Reserve meeting this week for signs of the
near-term direction for the dollar.
    "It feels as if the market has gone into a stand aside
mode.. with the three months prices doing relatively little and
looking for direction," said Kingdom Futures in a report.
    "Generally speaking this has been blamed on traders waiting
to see the result of the FOMC (Federal Open Market Committee)
meeting tomorrow... The reality is that prices need a catalyst
to regain direction."
    * LME COPPER: London Metal Exchange copper         was flat
at $6,528 a tonne, as of 0709 GMT. Prices have been
consolidating around $6,450 to $6,550 a tonne since falling to a
four-week trough of $6,453 a tonne last week. 
    * ShFE COPPER: Shanghai Futures Exchange copper         
finished up 0.8 percent at 50,730 yuan ($7,702) a tonne. 
    * FOMC: The focus for this week is the Fed's Sept. 19 to 20
policy meeting. The Fed may announce a plan to start shrinking
its balance sheet at the meeting, but is widely expected to keep
interest rates unchanged.             
    * CHINA PROPERTY: China's new home prices rose in August at
the slowest pace in seven months and fell or levelled off in
more cities as government cooling measures dampened speculation,
though there were no signs of a sharper correction that could
damage the economy.             
    * LME ZINC: London zinc         steadied after rising 2.2
percent in the previous session. It earlier rose to its highest
in more than a week at $3,123.50 a tonne. Among other LME
metals, nickel         fell 2 percent and aluminium        
climbed half a percent. 
    * ShFE ZINC: Shanghai zinc          climbed 2.3 percent,
largely tracking gains in London, while sister metal lead
         trimmed earlier gains to 2 percent. 
    * CHINA ZINC: Zinc prices have rallied on bets that steel
makers may be able to pay more for their raw materials, given
industry consolidation that has curbed overcapacity and pushed
up profits. 
    * ZINC SUPPLY: Zinc prices have also heated up given
expectations that tighter mine supply will impede production of
refined metal. China's August zinc production fell 4.6 percent.
    But several large mines have brought forward or raised
production, including MMG Ltd's           Dugald River
operations in Australia. Canada's Teck Resources Ltd           
raised its production guidance for 2017 at its Red Dog zinc mine
in Alaska to a range of 525,000 to 550,000 tonnes, up from
475,000 to 500,000 tonnes.
    * PERU ZINC: Peru raised its zinc production by 7 percent in
July. Peru is China's top zinc ore supplier with exports up by
half on last year near 400,000 tonnes to July.             
    * COMING UP: U.S. Housing starts for Aug at 1230 GMT    
    Three month LME copper                  
    Most active ShFE copper                  
    Three month LME aluminium               
    Most active ShFE aluminium               
    Three month LME zinc                    
    Most active ShFE zinc                    
    Three month LME lead                    
    Most active ShFE lead                    
    Three month LME nickel                 
    Most active ShFE nickel                   
    Three month LME tin                     
    Most active ShFE tin                             

($1 = 6.5862 Chinese yuan)

 (Reporting by Melanie Burton; Editing by Christian Schmollinger
and Sherry Jacob-Phillips)
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