UPDATE 1-LME to make improvements to electronic pricing during ring closure

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LONDON, March 10 (Reuters) - The London Metal Exchange (LME) will make changes to its electronic system for closing prices to make it more efficient during the suspension of open outcry trading due to the pandemic, it said on Wednesday.

Those changes were already being worked on well before a January proposal by the exchange to permanently close Europe’s last open-outcry trading floor and move to an electronic system, a statement said.

The January proposal by the world’s oldest and largest market for industrial metals would make sweeping changes to trading, in contrast to the minor enhancements for closing prices being implemented currently.

“The key changes... are designed to provide additional granularity in respect of certain aspects of, rather than to introduce material changes to, the existing methodology,” a members’ notice said on Wednesday.

Last October, the LME said it aimed to improve its electronic trading system since the ring was due to be closed for many more months due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The LME is owned by Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Ltd. (Reporting by Eric Onstad; Editing by Jan Harvey)