September 24, 2018 / 7:00 AM / 3 months ago

METALS-London copper slips from 10-week top on trade uncertainty

(Adds comment, detail, updates prices)

By Melanie Burton

MELBOURNE, Sept 24 (Reuters) - London copper eased on Monday as buying was thinned by holidays in China and Japan and fresh jitters on global trade, a session after it notched up its biggest one-day advance in more than five years.

Trade war worries had eased last week on expectations that any impact to global growth from an escalating trade war between the world's top two economies would not be as big as feared. However, China cancelled an upcoming trade talks with the U.S. at the weekend, underlining the fragility of negotiations.

"The news that the Chinese will not send a delegation to Washington for the proposed trade talks has duly sent the markets heading back down again," said broker Kingdom Futures in a report.

"The falls currently seen in the metals are not that big so far and the European opening will be key as much of Friday's rally appeared to be short covering and any dips from those levels may be seen as a buying opportunity."

FUNDAMENTALS

* COPPER: London Metal Exchange slipped by half a percent to $6,333 a tonne by 0637 GMT, after prices surged by 4.6 percent in the previous session to $6,382.50 a tonne, the highest since July 10.

* HOLIDAYS: The Shanghai Futures Exchange was closed for its mid-Autumn holiday.

* TRADE: The United States is optimistic about finding a way forward in its trade dispute with China, but it does not have a date scheduled for further talks as it assesses Beijing's response to the latest round of tariffs, a senior White House official said on Friday.

* RUSAL: Russian aluminium giant United Company Rusal is assembling a team of traders in China, three sources with knowledge of the matter said, as the spectre of U.S. sanctions hangs over its sales to customers in the West.

* RUSAL: The U.S. Treasury said on Friday it had extended until Nov. 12 a deadline for investors to divest holdings of debt, equity and other assets in sanctioned Russian companies EN+ and Rusal.

* COPPER INVESTORS: Hedge funds and money managers trimmed their net short position in COMEX copper contracts in the week to Sept. 18.

* OTHER METALS: Prices of nickel, which surged 5 percent on Friday to the strongest since late August, slipped by 1.3 percent to $13,085. Aluminium eased 0.7 percent to $2,075.50 having hit its highest in 11 days on Friday.

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MARKETS NEWS

* Asia shares eased in holiday-thinned trading on Monday and the safe haven yen gained as China cancelled upcoming tariff talks with the United States, while oil prices jumped after top producers including Russia ruled out boosting crude output.

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

Reporting by Melanie Burton; editing by Richard Pullin

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