November 12, 2018 / 4:13 AM / a month ago

METALS-Nickel drops to 11-mth lows as falling steel prices weigh

(Adds details, quotes, updates prices)

SINGAPORE, Nov 12 (Reuters) - Nickel on both the London and Shanghai exchanges on Monday fell to its lowest in around 11 months as rebar steel prices tumbled on concerns over slowing demand in top consumer China.

Thee-month nickel, used mainly in steelmaking, fell 0.4 percent to $11,420 a tonne on the London Metal Exchange by 0335 GMT, after earlier hitting its lowest since mid-December at $11,360 a tonne. The most-traded Shanghai nickel contract lost 2.3 percent to 94,760 yuan ($13,623.80) a tonne.

“Stainless steel prices dropped a lot in the last two weeks because production is too high,” said Peter Peng of CRU Group.

“I don’t think it’s just a nickel issue, it’s everything. Investors are quite bearish about the futures market,” he said.

A strong U.S. dollar and worries over economic growth in China as well as the U.S.-China trade tensions have been weighing on industrial metals.

* REBAR STEEL TUMBLE: Shanghai rebar steel prices tumbled nearly 4 percent to their lowest since late July on Monday, pressured by worries over slowing demand in top consumer China over the seasonally weak winter period.

* U.S. DOLLAR: The dollar built on last week’s gains and rose towards a 16-month high on Monday as traders expect the U.S. Federal Reserve to keep tightening monetary policy.

A stronger U.S. currency makes dollar-denominated metals more expensive for buyers paying in other currencies.

* OTHER METALS: London’s three-month copper futures rose 0.4 percent to $6,080 a tonne, while aluminium edged up 0.3 percent.

* RUSAL: The United States said on Friday it was postponing the enforcement of sanctions on Russia’s Rusal, the world’s second-biggest producer until Dec. 12 as its top shareholder works on a plan to cut his stakes.

* GLOBAL MARKETS: Asian shares fell on Monday, extending weakness in global equity markets at the end of last week as soft Chinese economic data and falling oil prices rekindled anxiety about the outlook for world growth.

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

($1 = 6.9555 yuan)

Reporting by Mai Nguyen

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