METALS-Shanghai copper near 1-month low on virus worries

(Updates prices)

July 20 (Reuters) - Shanghai copper fell on Tuesday to its lowest in nearly a month, as a surge in coronavirus cases threatened the outlook for a global economic recovery.

The most-traded August copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange fell as much as 2.3% to 67,400 yuan ($10,393.86) a tonne, its lowest since June 23, before edging up to close at 68,130 yuan a tonne, still down 1.2%.

Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange rose 0.6% to $9,277 a tonne by 0705 GMT, rebounding from a 2.2% drop in the previous session to a four-week low.

Sentiment for copper, often used as a gauge of global economic health, was hit by worries that rising cases of the highly contagious Delta variant around the world could slow a nascent economic recovery.

“It’s risk-off from U.S. selling and equities melting down. Recovery is fragile as it’s now threatened by the Delta variant spreading across the world and now going mainstream in the United States,” said a Singapore-based metals trader.


* LME aluminium rose 0.4% to $2,434 a tonne and nickel was up 0.5% at $18,550 a tonne.

* ShFE nickel dropped 2.6% to 138,830 yuan a tonne, tin shed 1.7% to 228,210 yuan a tonne, aluminium declined 1.5% to 19,075 yuan a tonne and lead slipped 1.3% to 15,630 yuan a tonne.

* The London Metal Exchange launched six new cash-settled futures contracts on Monday, including for aluminium scrap.

* Yangshan copper premium SMM-CUYP-CN was last at $35.50 a tonne, hovering around its highest since May 27, indicating rising demand for imported metal into China.

* An aluminium alloy unit of Dengfeng Power Group Co Ltd in China’s central Henan province exploded as flooding water entered the plant, the local government said.

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$1 = 6.4846 yuan Reporting by Mai Nguyen in Hanoi; Editing by Rashmi Aich, Subhranshu Sahu and Shailesh Kuber