METALS-Base metals range-bound in cautious trade; all eyes on China data

  • Jul 12, 2019
  • Reuters - Africa

SINGAPORE, July 12 (Reuters) - Industrial metals traded in tight ranges on Friday, as investors exercised caution ahead of a key set of data from top metal player China later in the session.

China is due to release its trade data for the month of June later on Friday, including imports and exports figures of key metals. China is the world’s biggest copper consumer and a key user or producer of the majority of the main base metals.

Prices on Friday were also pressured by a steady U.S. dollar , after stronger-than-expected U.S. inflation data tempered the prospect of an aggressive Federal Reserve interest rate cut later this month.

A stronger dollar makes greenback-prices metals more expensive for buyers using other currencies.

* PRICES: Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange was almost unchanged at $5,956 a tonne by 0151 GMT, while aluminium fell 0.4%, nickel decreased 0.3% and lead declined 0.7%.

* SHANGHAI: The most-traded copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange rose 0.3% to 46,680 yuan ($6,794.17) a tonne, while aluminium fell 0.8%, nickel advanced 0.5% and zinc fell 0.4%.

* TRADE WAR: U.S. President Donald Trump said on Thursday that China was not living up to promises it made on buying agricultural products from American farmers as the world’s two largest economies work to resolve a trade dispute.

* TIN: The tin market is under greater pressure from an economic slowdown and falling demand than supply issues, where lower production from countries such as Myanmar is likely to be offset by a new project in central Africa.

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* Asian shares pulled back as worries over renewed Sino-U.S. trade tensions weighed on sentiment ahead of the release of June trade data from China, though expectations of a Federal Reserve rate cut later this month kept losses in check.