October 23, 2017 / 5:13 AM / a year ago

METALS-London copper steady, underpinned by China growth hopes

 (Adds comment, detail, updates prices)
    By Melanie Burton
    MELBOURNE, Oct 23 (Reuters) - London copper pared early
gains but traded steady on Monday after Chinese authorities
reaffirmed that the country's economy was on track to achieve
the official growth target even as its housing market slows.
    China's new home prices registered another month of weak
growth in September, with the biggest markets slipping and vast
numbers of smaller cities cooling off as government measures to
cool a long property boom take hold.
    "Today's Chinese data started on a promising note with
property price rises almost slowing to a standstill which was
one of the objectives of the government to both calm inflation
down and stop investors using property as a speculative
product," broker Kingdom Futures said in a report.
    "That would come under the heading of so far so good but
raises the question of where the investors will turn next and
could they come back into the commodity markets."
    * LME COPPER: London Metal Exchange copper erased
early gains of half a percent to trade flat at $6,950 a tonne by
 0703 GMT, after closing little changed in the previous session,
when it posted its fourth straight weekly gain. LME copper
prices reached $7,177 a tonne last week, the highest in three
years, as manufacturing brightens in Asia, Europe and the United
    * SHFE COPPER: Shanghai Futures Exchange copper
slipped by 0.6 percent to 54,390 yuan ($8,199) a tonne.
   * CHINA ECONOMY: China's economy is on track to meet its
official growth target for 2017, the head of the state planning
agency said on Saturday, despite a punishing war on pollution
which is expected to slash industrial output over the winter
    * U.S. ECONOMY: President Donald Trump's tax reform plans
won partial support on Friday when Republican U.S. Senator Rand
Paul said he was "all in" for massive tax cuts, but the party
was still far from united over how to achieve the main item on
its domestic agenda.
    * RECYCLING: After years of dismantling discarded
televisions and laptops, a Shanghai recycling plant is readying
itself for a new wave of waste: piles of exhausted batteries
from the surge of electric vehicles hitting China's streets.
    * INVESTORS: Hedge funds and money managers reduced their
net long position in COMEX copper contracts to a five-week high
in the week to Oct. 17, U.S. Commodity Futures Trading
Commission (CFTC) data showed on Friday.
    * ALUMINIUM: U.C. Rusal said that aluminium
production rose 1.1 percent on the quarter to 931,000 tonnes in
the third quarter.
    * NICKEL: Nickel volumes surged in line with a rally in
China steel. "The volumes so far on nickel have been decent and
in a relatively tight range but given the rally we have seen in
bulks the move higher has been somewhat muted so far," said
broker Marex in a report. 
 BASE METALS PRICES                 0701 GMT         
 Three month LME copper                          6946
 Most active ShFE copper                        54390
 Three month LME aluminium                       2143
 Most active ShFE aluminium                     16235
 Three month LME zinc                            3115
 Most active ShFE zinc                          25430
 Three month LME lead                          2477.5
 Most active ShFE lead                          19290
 Three month LME nickel                         11785
 Most active ShFE nickel                        94780
 Three month LME tin                            19620
 Most active ShFE tin                          144750
 BASE METALS ARBITRAGE                               
 LME/SHFE COPPER              LMESHFCUc3       546.41
 LME/SHFE ALUMINIUM           LMESHFALc3      -324.72
 LME/SHFE ZINC                LMESHFZNc3       678.25
 LME/SHFE LEAD                LMESHFPBc3      -684.94
 LME/SHFE NICKEL              LMESHFNIc3      2639.73
($1 = 6.6310 Chinese yuan)

($1 = 6.6340 Chinese yuan renminbi)

 (Reporting by Melanie Burton; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu and
Vyas Mohan)
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