November 21, 2019 / 7:41 AM / 3 months ago

REFILE-UPDATE 1-China iron ore futures rise amid worries over U.S.-China trade deal delay

(Corrects premier spelling in 12th paragraph)

* Spot 62% iron ore rises to $86.5 per tonne on Wed

* A U.S.-China “Phase One” deal could slide into 2020

By Min Zhang and Enrico Dela Cruz

BEIJING, Nov 21 (Reuters) - Iron ore futures in China recovered from early losses to close slightly higher on Thursday, amid uncertainty on whether Beijing and Washington could reach a “phase one” trade deal this year.

Reuters, citing trade experts and people close to the White House, reported that completion of the “phase one” trade deal could slide into next year, while Bloomberg quoted Chinese Vice Premier Liu He as saying he was “confused” about U.S. demands, but was confident that an agreement could be reached.

A fresh row between the two countries over U.S. legislation on Hong Kong also clouded the prospects of a deal.

The most-actively traded iron ore futures on the Dalian Commodity Exchange, for January 2020 delivery, lost 0.1% in morning trade, before reversing course to close 0.7% higher at 641.50 yuan ($91.16) a tonne.

Prices for spot cargoes of benchmark iron ore with 62% iron content for delivery to China SH-CCN-IRNOR62 rose for a sixth session to $86.5 per tonne on Wednesday.

Spot cargoes rose as steel margins are improving, said Darren Toh, a data scientist at Singapore-based steel and iron data analytics company Tivlon Technologies.

The most-traded construction steel rebar contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange, for January 2020 delivery, fell 1.1% to 3,619 yuan a tonne.

Hot-rolled coil, used for cars and home appliances, slid 1.1% to 3,496 yuan a tonne.


* Other steelmaking ingredients fell. Dalian coke declined 0.7% to 1,802 yuan a tonne and Dalian coking coal slumped 0.3% to 1,257.50 yuan a tonne.

* Shanghai stainless steel futures fell 0.3% to 14,375 yuan a tonne.

* China still faces severe external and internal challenges but the government has the confidence, patience and determination to achieve the country’s rejuvenation, Vice President Wang Qishan said.

* China needs to make better use of its various policy tools to boost the economy, Premier Li Keqiang said, adding that all possible means would be used to lower real interest rates and monetary policy needed to be better suited to boosting economic activity.

* For the top stories of metals and other news, click or ($1 = 7.0370 Chinese yuan)

Reporting by Min Zhang and Enrico dela Cruz; editing by Uttaresh.V and Subhranshu Sahu

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