April 27, 2020 / 3:31 AM / a month ago

METALS-London copper nears 6-week high as major economies prepare to reopen

SINGAPORE, April 27 (Reuters) - Copper prices in London on Monday rose to their highest in nearly six weeks as some major economies plan to reopen businesses after weeks of lockdown to contain the pandemic.

Benchmark three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange (LME) rose as much as 2.3% to $5,260 a tonne, its highest since March 17.

The most-traded June copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange (ShFE) advanced as high as 2.6% to 42,880 yuan ($6,059.15) a tonne, a level unseen since April 17.

More U.S. states prepared to ease coronavirus restrictions this week, while Italy will allow factories and building sites to reopen from May 4 and South Africa planed to allow some manufacturing and retail activities to resume.

FUNDAMENTALS

* OTHER PRICES: LME nickel was up 2.1% at $12,500 a tonne, as of 0307 GMT, aluminium rose 0.5% to $1,521 a tonne and tin climbed 3% to $15,330 a tonne.

* SHFE PRICES: Zinc climbed 2.6% to 13,175 yuan a tonne, nickel advanced 2.5% to 102,860 yuan a tonne and tin jumped 4.7% to 134,260 yuan a tonne, its highest since March 12.

* STOCKPILING: China’s Yunnan province would set aside 1 billion yuan to help businesses stockpile 800,000 tonnes of base metal to boost its real economy after the outbreak.

* COPPER: Total imports of copper concentrate into China in March edged up 1.03% year-on-year to 1.78 million tonnes as the country boosted imports from alternative sources amid a slump in shipments from top suppliers Peru and Chile.

* TRADE: China’s nickel ore imports in March fell 42.3% on-year to a 25-month low.

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MARKETS NEWS

* Asian shares inched higher ahead of a busy week for earnings and central bank meetings, with much chatter the Bank of Japan will announce more stimulus steps.

DATA/EVENTS AHEAD (GMT)

1230 Brazil Current Account March

1230 Brazil Foreign Direct Investment March

— Japan Bank of Japan holds monetary policy 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 = 7.0769 yuan Reporting by Mai Nguyen, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips

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