May 27, 2019 / 5:07 AM / 4 months ago

METALS-Shanghai aluminium advances as fire halts production at Chinese smelter

(Updates prices, adds details)

By Mai Nguyen

SINGAPORE, May 27 (Reuters) - Shanghai aluminium rose over 1% on Monday to a more than one-week high after a Chinese firm halted production at a smelting unit due to a fire over the weekend.

Henan Shenhuo Coal & Power Co Ltd said its aluminium unit in Yongcheng caught fire on Sunday, and output capacity of 250,000 tonnes had been halted.

Aluminium prices on the Shanghai Futures Exchange rose as much as 1.1% to 14,340 yuan ($2,079.92) a tonne, their highest since May. 17, before erasing some of the gains to close 0.9% higher.

Other industrial metals in Shanghai also rose, after Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said China would look to keep value-added tax low for the manufacturing industry to support the economy, and following comments from U.S. President Donald Trump that Huawei could be included in the trade deal.

"There's a little bit pullback in Donald Trump's hostility towards Huawei... It's negotiable, so there could be a deal," said analyst Helen Lau of Argonaut Securities.

Lau also mentioned the banking and insurance regulator's warning to speculative short sellers that they would suffer "heavy losses" if they bet against the yuan.

"That has definitely injected some confidence in the overall market in China," she said.

FUNDAMENTALS

* PRICES: The most-traded copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange ended up 0.8% at 47,280 yuan a tonne and zinc advanced 0.8%, while lead closed 1.1% lower.

* COPPER: Unionized workers at top copper miner Codelco's Chuquicamata mine voted on Saturday to reject the state miner's final contract offer, paving the way for a vote to strike this week, union leaders said in a statement.

* COPPER TECHNICALS: LME copper may bounce to $6,063 per tonne this week, as it failed to break a support at $5,934, said Reuters technical analyst Wang Tao.

* CHINA: Profits for China's industrial firms dropped in April on slowing demand and manufacturing activity, suggesting March's rebound may have been a one-off and adding pressure for policymakers to step up support for a cooling economy.

* CHINA AUTOMOBILE: China's automobile sales will reach around 28.1 million units this year, unchanged from 2018 levels, state news agency Xinhua reported on Sunday.

* NICKEL: Shanghai nickel rose 3.12%, its highest daily gain since April 2018, following a jump in London nickel that broke its 200-day moving average in the last session when bearish investors covered their short positions.

* LME: The London Metal Exchange is closed on Monday and will reopen on Tuesday.

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

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 = 6.8945 Chinese yuan)

Reporting by Mai Nguyen; editing by Richard Pullin and Subhranshu Sahu

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