October 16, 2017 / 5:31 AM / a year ago

METALS-London copper hits 3-year high, breaking $7,000/T, on rosier China economy

 (Adds comment, detail, updates prices)
    By Melanie Burton
    MELBOURNE, Oct 16 (Reuters) - London copper prices charged
through the $7,000 mark for the first time in three years on
Monday, underpinned by improving manufacturing profits in China
that pointed to robust growth in the world's top user of metals.
    China's producer price inflation unexpectedly accelerated to
a six-month high in September as a construction boom showed no
signs of abating and as a government crackdown on air pollution
triggered fears of winter shortages.
    The inflation reading followed data showing China's copper
imports surged in September, fuelling optimism about demand,
said analyst Helen Lau of broker Argonaut Securities in Hong
   "Based on these quite solid fundamentals, people will react
very positively to any newsflow on copper," she said. 
    * LME COPPER: London Metal Exchange copper struck
$7,083.50 a tonne, the highest since September 2014, and traded
at $7,058 by 0550 GMT, up 2.6 percent. Prices have climbed
nearly 9 percent so far this month and are up 27 percent year to
date, the biggest annual gain since 2010.
    * SHANGHAI COPPER: Shanghai Futures Exchange copper
rallied 3 pct to 55,000 yuan ($8,364), the highest since
February 2013. 
    * CHINA COPPER: China's unwrought copper imports surged by
26.5 percent in September from a year ago, customs data showed
on Friday, but remained on course for an annual drop in 2017.

    * CHINA ECONOMY: China's economy is expected to grow 7
percent in the second half of this year, the country's central
bank governor said, defying economists' expectations for a
    * OIL: Supporting oil prices, Iraqi forces began moving at
midnight on Sunday towards oil fields held by Kurdish Peshmerga
fighters near the oil-rich city of Kirkuk.

    * ALUMINIUM: The Chinese city of Binzhou, home to top global
aluminium producer China Hongqiao Group, has ordered
the closure of around 2.57 million tonnes of smelting capacity
this winter, according to Reuters calculations based on
government document.
    * COPPER, ALUMINIUM: In a potential boost to U.S. copper and
aluminium demand, the Trump administration is requiring the use
of North American-made steel, aluminium, copper and plastic
resins in cars and trucks sold under North American Free Trade
Agreement rules.
    * COPPER INVESTORS: Hedge funds and money managers raised
their net long positions in copper futures and options for the
first time in five weeks, in the week to Oct. 10, U.S. Commodity
Futures Trading Commission data showed on Friday.
    * COMING UP: China is in the midst of publishing September
data, culminating in its third-quarter gross domestic product
number on Thursday. The twice-in-a-decade Communist Party
congress will begin on Wednesday where President Xi Jinping is
expected to strengthen his grip on power in a major party
leadership reshuffle.
 BASE METALS PRICES                 0630 GMT                
 Three month LME copper                               7059.5
 Most active ShFE copper                               54890
 Three month LME aluminium                            2148.5
 Most active ShFE aluminium                            16485
 Three month LME zinc                                   3272
 Most active ShFE zinc                                 26280
 Three month LME lead                                 2566.5
 Most active ShFE lead                                 20575
 Three month LME nickel                                11715
 Most active ShFE nickel                               93570
 Three month LME tin                                   20765
 Most active ShFE tin                                 147910
 BASE METALS ARBITRAGE                                      
 LME/SHFE COPPER                LMESHFCUc3            679.27
 LME/SHFE ALUMINIUM             LMESHFALc3              5.83
 LME/SHFE ZINC                  LMESHFZNc3            606.33
 LME/SHFE LEAD                  LMESHFPBc3           -195.35
 LME/SHFE NICKEL                LMESHFNIc3           2460.76

    ($1 = 6.5755 Chinese yuan)

 (Reporting by Melanie Burton; Editing by Tom Hogue and Sonali
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