* LME/ShFE arbitrage: tmsnrt.rs/2oQ5nm2
* Wide LME zinc contango shows well-supplied market
* Aluminium biggest speculative long on LME - Marex
(Updates with closing prices)
By Eric Onstad
LONDON, April 4 Zinc prices bounced after
touching a three-week low on Tuesday as investors bet lacklustre
demand would recover in top metals consumer China, while copper
hit a one-week low.
"We remain in a holding pattern across the complex, largely
tied to how on-shore (Chinese) demand conditions are going to
evolve over the next month or two. That's really the key to the
outlook," said Nicholas Snowdon, metals analyst at Standard
Chartered in London.
"The physical markets for the majority of the metals at a
refined level remain very soft and the longer we go on without
Chinese demand picking up, the more pressure there will be on
prices," he added.
"We still think the zinc refined market will tighten up in
the second quarter."
* ZINC: Benchmark London Metal Exchange zinc closed
up 1 percent at $2,736, recovering from a low of $2,702, the
weakest since March 14, and after falling 2.2 percent on Monday.
* ZINC SPREAD: A widening of LME zinc spreads indicated
adequate supply of refined metal in the market. The discount of
LME cash zinc to the three-month contract CMZN0-3 moved to $27
a tonne, the biggest discount since October 2015.
* SHFE: The Shanghai Futures Exchange was closed for a
public holiday and will reopen on Wednesday.
* COPPER: LME copper ended 0.4 percent higher at
$5,778, after slipping to its lowest since March 27 at $5,730.
On Monday, it broke below the 100-day moving average at $5,785,
and ended with a 1.5 percent loss.
* ESCONDIDA: Escondida, the world's biggest copper mine, has
restarted production but is still some way from a return to full
capacity after a strike that ended in late March, a senior
executive from mine owner BHP Billiton, said.
* ANTOFAGASTA: The world's copper market could see a small
shortage this year, but the price outlook is uncertain, as risk
factors include the possibility of protectionist policy from the
United States, the head of miner Antofagasta said.
* ALUMINIUM: The LME price closed down 0.8 percent
at $1,937. Alastair Munro at broker Marex Spectron said it had
the biggest speculative long of the complex at 41 percent of
open interest, close to the multi-year high of 43 percent. LME
stocks MALSTX-TOTAL fell 14,250 tonnes to the lowest since
* ALUMINIUM TECHNICALS: Consolidation expected this week,
but later aluminium is likely to target $2,000, said Commerzbank
technical analyst Axel Rudolph in a note. "We will retain our
short-term bullish forecast while no drop below the March low at
$1,848 is seen."
* PRICES: Lead ended 1 percent higher at $2,309,
nickel gained 1.3 percent to $9,980 and tin
dipped 0.1 percent to $20,025.
(Reporting by Eric Onstad, editing by Dale Hudson and David