By Josephine Mason
BEIJING, April 9 (Reuters) -
* Chinese iron ore futures fell to their lowest levels in 10 months on Monday amid growing concerns about demand as inventory piled up in the world’s top steel maker and tensions with the United States grew
* The most-active iron ore for May delivery on the Dalian Commodity Exchange settled down 1.4 percent at 433 yuan ($68.62) per tonne
* In early morning trade, it hit 425.5 yuan, its weakest since late June 2017
* Worries that a mounting U.S.-China trade dispute would hurt demand for steel and its raw materials, including coke and coking coal, also hurt sentiment
* “Traders are likely to remain risk-averse as the trade conflict between the United States and China continues to escalate,” said ANZ in a research note.
* Stocks at China’s ports fell from record highs to 161.03 million tonnes, down 0.4 percent from the previous week, according to weekly data compiled by SteelHome consultancy. SH-TOT-IRONINV
* It marked the first drop in a month
* Investors were also adding bearish bets as trading resumed after a two-day public holiday in China on Thursday and Friday.
* China warned late last week it was fully prepared to respond with a “fierce counter strike” of fresh measures if the United States follows through on President Donald Trump’s threat to slap tariffs on an additional $100 billion in Chinese goods
* The most-traded October rebar on the Shanghai Futures Exchange eked out small gains, rising 0.6 percent to settle at 3,362 yuan ($532.81) per tonne.
* ($1 = 6.2983 Chinese yuan) (Reporting by Josephine Mason; Editing by Richard Pullin and Sherry Jacob-Phillips)