August 21, 2017 / 3:01 AM / 3 months ago

METALS-London zinc, nickel extend rally on steel gains

MELBOURNE, Aug 21 (Reuters) - London zinc rose to its highest price in a decade on Monday and nickel also rallied as investors ploughed into metals used by China’s steel sector, seeing robust demand even as capacity is constrained by Beijing’s drive to reform bloated industries.

FUNDAMENTALS

* London Metal Exchange (LME) zinc hit the highest since Oct. 2007 at $3,163.50 a tonne, up around 1 percent. LME nickel, used in the stainless steel sector, rallied by 2.2 percent to $11,220 a tonne.

* London Metal Exchange copper edged up 0.3 percent to $6,506 a tonne by 0217 GMT, heading back towards last week’s $6,580 peak, the highest since Nov. 2014.

* Shanghai Futures Exchange copper showed modest 0.3 percent gains. SHFE nickel rallied more than 4 percent while SHFE zinc was up 2 percent.

* China’s steel and its raw materials have rallied amid a firm outlook for demand in the world’s top consumer.

* Confidence at Japanese manufacturers rose to its highest level in a decade in August led by materials producers, a Reuters poll showed, a further sign of broadening recovery in the economy.

* Cash aluminium has soared against the benchmark aluminium contract, reflecting a rush on immediate supply. Cash aluminium traded at a $9.50 premium against the benchmark, up from a $21 discount in early August. CMAL0-3

* Limited access to the giant Grasberg copper mine in eastern Indonesia is expected to resume on Monday, its operator said, after hundreds of former workers blockaded the site and clashed with police.

* Protesters in Peru have removed barriers on a road used by MMG Ltd to move its copper concentrate from its Las Bambas mine to port for shipping, after the government declared a state of emergency in the region, a representative of the ombudsman’s office said Friday.

* Speculators in Comex copper boosted their record long position by 8,063 contracts to 120,175 in the latest week, data from the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission showed.

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MARKETS NEWS

* Asian shares were little changed in early Monday trade as investors remained unconvinced about U.S. President Donald Trump’s ability to fulfil his economic agenda, even as the departure of controversial policy strategist Steve Bannon raised hopes of some progress.

DATA AHEAD (GMT)

* 1230 U.S. National activity index Jul

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

ARBS

Reporting by Melanie Burton; Editing by Kenneth Maxwell

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