February 20, 2018 / 8:10 AM / 3 months ago

METALS-LME copper prices drift on steady dollar, China holiday

 (Updates prices)
    MELBOURNE, Feb 20 (Reuters) - London copper drifted lower on
Tuesday as a firm dollar dictated direction in a thinly traded
market, with holidays in top metals user China. 
    
    FUNDAMENTALS
    * COPPER: London Metal Exchange copper eased for a
second day, dropping 0.3 percent to $7,094.50 a tonne by 0725
GMT, having touched its highest in a month on Friday at $7,253.
    * OTHER METALS: Other metals were also a tad lower in
extremely light trading volumes of around 2,000 lots.
    * SHFE: The Shanghai Futures Exchange is closed for the
Lunar New Year, reopening on Thursday, Feb. 22.
    * U.S. DOLLAR: The dollar inched higher versus a basket of
major currencies on Tuesday, clinging above a three-year low set
last week, but its outlook was clouded by concerns that the
ballooning U.S. fiscal deficit could disrupt the economy.
    * ZINC: Vedanta may accelerate expansion of its
African zinc operations to take advantage of prices that have
reached their highest levels in a decade because of a shortfall
following years of under-investment, its international zinc head
said.
    Vedanta is already bringing on new production at Gamsberg in
the Northern Cape region of South Africa, where output should
start around the middle of this year, ramping up to full
production of 250,000 tonnes annually in around a year's time.
    * LME ZINC: LME zinc last week struck $3,595.50, the
highest since July 2007, after a lack of mining investment in
the last downturn crimped supply.
    * RUSAL: Russian businessman Mikhail Prokhorov has agreed to
sell a 6 percent stake in Russian aluminium giant Rusal
 to a consortium of investors led by billionaire Viktor
Vekselberg and his partners, the consortium said on Monday.

    * The world's biggest miner BHP Billiton,
reported a 25 percent rise in underlying half-year profit on
Tuesday, helped by robust metals prices, and said its focus
remains on cutting debt and boosting shareholder returns.

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    MARKETS NEWS    
    * Asian stocks slipped on Tuesday, their recent recovery
stalling after European equities broke a winning streak, while
the dollar edged up to pull further away from three-year lows.
    
        
    DATA/EVENTS (GMT)    
    1000 Germany   ZEW Economic Sentiment Feb    
    PRICES    
   
                                       0727 GMT            
 Three month LME copper                                7095
 Most active ShFE copper                                  0
 Three month LME aluminium                             2209
 Most active ShFE aluminium                               0
 Three month LME zinc                                3550.5
 Most active ShFE zinc                                    0
 Three month LME lead                                  2569
 Most active ShFE lead                                    0
 Three month LME nickel                               13560
 Most active ShFE nickel                                  0
 Three month LME tin                                  21490
 Most active ShFE tin                                     0
 
    
 (Reporting by Melanie Burton; Editing by Joseph Radford and
Gopakumar Warrier)
  
 
 
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