March 28, 2019 / 5:41 AM / 3 months ago

METALS-Copper steady ahead of U.S.-China trade talks

 (Adds comment, updates prices)
    BEIJING, March 28 (Reuters) - London copper prices held
steady on Thursday as investors awaited news from U.S.-China
trade talks restarting in Beijing, while supply issues offset
fears of a recession in the United States.
    China and the United States have made progress in all areas
under discussion in trade talks, with unprecedented movement on
the touchy issue of forced technology transfers, but sticking
points remain, U.S. officials told Reuters on Wednesday.

    "Concerns of weaker economic growth are likely to keep
downward pressure on commodities for the time being," ANZ wrote
in a note, adding that base metals were nonetheless being
supported by supply-side issues and low inventories.
    Zinc stocks in London Metal Exchange warehouses MZN-STX
fell by another 1,200 tonnes on Wednesday to just 55,225 tonnes,
the lowest since 1991, while the "disruption to copper supplies
from Las Bambas lingers," ANZ said, referring to the mine in
Peru where MMG expects to declare force majeure.   
    * COPPER: Three-month LME copper was flat at $6,334
a tonne as of 0516 GMT, while the most-traded May copper
contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange was unchanged
at 48,400 yuan a tonne.
    * TC/RCs: The 10-member China Smelters Purchase Team (CSPT)
is meeting in Shanghai to determine floor treatment and refining
charges (TC/RCs) for copper concentrate in the second quarter.
    * COPPER: CSPT member Jiangxi Copper Co,
 said on Wednesday 2018 net profit rose 52.4 percent
year on year as a hedging gain boosted its bottom line.

    * SCRAP: China will aim to cut solid waste imports to zero
by next year as part of its efforts to ease pollution pressures
and encourage its recyclers to treat the soaring volumes of
domestic trash, an environmental ministry official said on
    * OTHER METALS: Shanghai zinc rose as much as 1.4
percent to 22,615 yuan a tonne, extending the one-year high it
hit on Wednesday. In London, zinc was down 0.2 percent,
while nickel and aluminium fell 0.4 percent
each. Lead was the sole gainer on the LME, adding 0.6
    * NICKEL: Indonesia's nickel-related industries such as the
production of stainless steel and battery materials are set to
surpass the value of its second-biggest export earner, palm oil,
in the next 10 to 15 years, its investment board chief said on
    * Global bond yields continued to spiral lower in Asia on
Thursday as recession fears fed expectations of more policy
easing by major central banks, though some share markets in the
region did manage to steady after an early sell off.
 BASE METALS PRICES                        0522 GMT
 Three month LME copper                        6332
 Most active ShFE copper                      48400
 Three month LME aluminium                     1902
 Most active ShFE aluminium                   13680
 Three month LME zinc                          2880
 Most active ShFE zinc                        22540
 Three month LME lead                        2019.5
 Most active ShFE lead                        16780
 Three month LME nickel                       13010
 Most active ShFE nickel                     100680
 Three month LME tin                          21210
 Most active ShFE tin                        145780
 BASE METALS ARBITRAGE                             
 LME/SHFE COPPER               LMESHFCUc3   -947.46
 LME/SHFE ALUMINIUM            LMESHFALc3  -1121.35
 LME/SHFE ZINC                 LMESHFZNc3   -598.46
 LME/SHFE LEAD                 LMESHFPBc3    540.24
 LME/SHFE NICKEL               LMESHFNIc3  -3224.48
 (Reporting by Tom Daly; editing by Richard Pullin and
Subhranshu Sahu)
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