February 22, 2017 / 1:32 AM / 6 months ago

METALS-Copper steadies as U.S. dollar slips

SYDNEY, Feb 22 (Reuters) - Copper steadied in early trading on Wednesday, after slipping overnight, as a weaker U.S. dollar limited profit taking.

FUNDAMENTALS

* Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange was flat at $6,060 a tonne by 0100 GMT after dropping 0.2 percent the previous session.

* The most-traded copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange dipped 0.2 percent to 48,930 yuan ($7,111)a tonne.

* Disruptions and labour negotiations continue to affect production at two of the world's largest copper mines.

* Chile's Escondida copper mine, the world's largest, said on Tuesday it would not begin replacing striking workers for at least 30 days into a work stoppage to show its commitment to dialogue.

* U.S. President Donald Trump's protectionist stance is likely to erode economic growth over the longer term and therefore demand for raw materials, the chief executive of the world's biggest miner, BHP Billiton, said on Tuesday.

* Global aluminium output was running at an annualised pace of 62.0 million tonnes in January, a new all-time record.

* The worldwide nickel market moved to a surplus of 9,700 tonnes in December from a deficit of 1,700 tonnes the previous month, the International Nickel Study Group said on Tuesday.

* Fed up with unpredictable and often exorbitant electricity prices, Sun Metals CEO Yun Birm Choi plans to invest A$183 million ($140 million) to build a massive solar farm to power his zinc refinery in the Australian outback.

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

MARKETS NEWS

* Asian stocks edged up on Wednesday, joining a record-setting night for world markets as investors cheered upbeat factory activity in Europe and solid earnings on Wall Street.

* The dollar edged down in Asian trading on Wednesday as investors awaited the minutes of the Federal Reserve's latest meeting for clues as to the pace of interest rate hikes, while the euro nursed losses and remained pressured by European political woes.

DATA/EVENTS 0130 China House prices Jan 0900 Germany Ifo business climate Feb 0930 Britain GDP 2nd release Q4 1500 U.S. Existing home sales Jan 1900 Minutes of Federal Reserve's Jan. 31-Feb. 1 meeting

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

$1 = 6.8810 Chinese yuan renminbi Reporting by James Regan; Editing by Richard Pullin

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