MELBOURNE, March 2 (Reuters) - London copper defied a strong dollar on Thursday to climb towards its highest in more than a week, bouyed by improving manufacturing reports out of Asia and the United States that have lifted the demand outlook.
* Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange edged up by 0.2 percent to $6,026.50 a tonne by 0047 GMT, adding to 0.7 percent gains from the previous session when prices hit $6,090 a tonne, the highest since Feb. 21.
* Shanghai Futures Exchange copper was up 0.8 percent at 48,710 yuan ($7,078) a tonne.
* U.S. consumer spending cooled in January as demand for automobiles and utilities fell, but inflation recorded its biggest monthly increase in four years, raising the probability of an interest rate hike from the Federal Reserve this month.
* Fed Governor Lael Brainard, the central bank’s leading voice on international economics, said the global economy seems to have turned a corner, clearing the way for a hike “soon.”
* A three-week-long strike at Chile’s Escondida, the world’s biggest copper mine, turned ugly on Wednesday when a group of striking workers blocked a highway, provoking confrontations with the police.
* Noranda Income Fund said on Wednesday it was deferring its 2017 zinc production and sales forecasts due to an ongoing strike by workers at its Quebec processing plant, the second-largest in North America.
* China has ordered steel and aluminium producers in 28 cities to slash output during winter, outlined plans to curb coal use in the capital and required coal transport by rail in the north, as Beijing intensifies its war on smog, a policy document shows.
* For the top stories in metals and other news, click or
* Asian shares rose on Thursday as investors were encouraged by President Donald Trump’s measured tone in his first speech to Congress, which sent Wall Street stocks sharply higher, while growing bets on a U.S. rate hike this month buoyed the dollar.
0700 Germany Import prices Jan
1000 Euro zone Inflation Feb
1000 Euro zone Producer prices Jan
1000 Euro zone Unemployment rate Jan
1330 U.S. Weekly jobless claims
1445 U.S. ISM-New York index Feb
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 = 6.8817 Chinese yuan renminbi Reporting by Melanie Burton; Editing by Richard Pullin