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METALS-Copper prices dip as premiums fall, inventories rise

HANOI, April 7 (Reuters) - Copper prices declined on Wednesday as lower premiums and rising inventories underscored weaker-than-expected demand pick-up in China during one of its traditionally strong consumption season.

Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange fell 0.2% to $9,026 a tonne by 0128 GMT, while the most-traded May copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange slid 0.1% to 67,150 yuan ($10,272.30) a tonne.

Yangshan copper premium SMM-CUYP-CN was last at $57 a tonne, hovering around its lowest since Nov. 30, 2020, indicating subdued demand for imported copper into China where consumption is expected to be strong in the second quarter.

Meanwhile, inventories have been rising in LME and ShFE warehouses. MCUSTX-TOTALCU-STX-SGH

FUNDAMENTALS

* LME aluminium fell 0.8% to $2,250.50 a tonne, nickel declined 0.7% to $16,625 a tonne, while tin rose 0.5% to 25,940 a tonne.

* ShFE aluminium declined 0.8% to 17,395 yuan a tonne, tin dropped 0.5% to 184,930 yuan a tonne, while zinc rose 0.3% to 21,845 yuan a tonne.

* Major tin producer Indonesia’s PT Timah’s 2021 refined tin output is seen falling 25.6% year-on-year to 34,000 tonnes, while sales of the product is set to fall 44.4% annually to 31,000 tonnes this year, a company official said.

MARKETS NEWS

* Asia equities are set for a sluggish open after Wall Street pulled back from record highs reached in previous sessions, as investors eye the upcoming earnings season for more signs of a recovery.

DATA/EVENTS (GMT)

0600 UK Reserve Assets Total March

0750 France Markit Serv, Comp PMIs March

0755 Germany Markit Services PMI March

0755 Germany Markit Comp Final PMI March

0800 EU Markit Serv, Comp Final PMIs March

1430 US International Trade Feb

1800 Federal Open Market Committee will release the minutes

from its March 16 - 17 policy meeting

$1 = 6.5370 yuan Reporting by Mai Nguyen; editing by Uttaresh.V

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