March 20, 2019 / 1:55 AM / a month ago

METALS-Most base metals ease ahead of Fed meeting result

SINGAPORE, March 20 (Reuters) - Most industrial metals on the London Metal Exchange fell on Wednesday, shrugging off some gains in the previous sessions as investors turned cautious ahead of the result of the U.S. Federal Reserve rate meeting later in the day.

FUNDAMENTALS

* Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange fell 0.2 percent to $6,446.5 a tonne by 0127 GMT, while the most-traded copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange eased 0.1 percent to 49,220 yuan ($7,334.66) a tonne.

* London aluminium retreated 0.5 percent from a three-month high reached in the previous session following a cyber attack on aluminium maker Norsk Hydro, while zinc lost 0.3 percent and lead eased 0.2 percent.

* The U.S. Federal Reserve will announce the result of its policy meeting later on Wednesday. It is widely expected to hold its benchmark rate unchanged, but investors will look for any clues on future rate moves.

* U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin plan to travel to China next week for trade talks with Chinese Vice Premier Liu He, marking an acceleration of negotiations, a U.S. official said on Tuesday.

* Miner KGHM will extend negotiations with a union at its Chilean copper mine Sierra Gorda, averting a strike, a union representative said.

* The reactivation of a smelter belonging to Chile's state-owned Codelco, the world's largest copper producer, will take more time than expected, the country's mining minister Baldo Prokurica said on Tuesday.

* Chinese property firm Evergrande Group will start producing its first electric vehicles in June as part of a goal to become the world's top new energy vehicle (NEV) company within the next three to five years, its chairman said.

* For the top stories in metals and other news, click or

MARKETS NEWS

* Asian shares got off to a cautious start on Wednesday, holding close to six-month highs on hopes the U.S. Federal Reserve will stick to a dovish stance and unveil a plan to stop cutting bond holdings later this year.

DATA/EVENTS (GMT)

0930 UK CPI Feb

1300 Russia Unemployment Rate Feb

1800 US Federal Reserve's Federal Open Market Committee announces its decision on interest rates followed by statement

1830 U.S. Federal Reserve chairman holds a news conference

PRICES

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

ARBS ($1 = 6.7106 Chinese yuan renminbi)

Reporting by Mai Nguyen; editing by Richard Pullin

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