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METALS-Industrial metals fall as dollar firms on higher U.S. yields

HANOI, March 19 (Reuters) - Base metal prices fell on Friday as rising U.S. Treasury yields strengthened the safe-haven dollar, making greenback-priced metals more expensive to holders of other currencies.

Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange was down 0.7% to $8,995 a tonne by 0108 GMT, while the most-traded May copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange shed 0.6% to 66,740 yuan ($10,259.17) a tonne.

LME nickel dropped 1.2% to $15,840 a tonne, aluminium was down 0.5% to $2,206 a tonne and ShFE aluminium fell 1.7% to 17,390 yuan a tonne. SHFE nickel declined 1.8% to 118,570 yuan a tonne.

Rising Treasury yields and falling stock markets pushed the dollar higher, as investors continued to digest the U.S. Federal Reserve’s pushback against expectations of any early interest-rate hikes.

The yield on the U.S. 10-year Treasury note on Thursday rose above 1.75% for the first time in 14 months.

FUNDAMENTALS

* Cancelled warrants for LME aluminium MALSTX-TOTAL - metals earmarked for delivery - rose to their highest since February 2020 at 382,325 tonnes.

* China’s aluminium imports in the first two months of 2021 rose 150.7% from a year earlier, customs data showed, as overseas metal booked at favourable prices continued to flow into the world’s biggest aluminium market.

* The global nickel market surplus shrank to 8,400 tonnes in January from a revised surplus of 14,700 tonnes in the previous month, data from the International Nickel Study Group showed.

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MARKETS NEWS

* Asian share markets eased as a spike in global bond yields soured sentiment toward richly priced tech stocks, while a stampede out of crowded positions in crude oil caused the sharpest setback in months.

DATA/EVENTS (GMT)

0700 Germany Producer Prices MM, YY Feb ($1 = 6.5054 yuan) (Reporting by Mai Nguyen; Editing by Devika Syamnath)

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