|06 March, 2019

Nickel climbs for 4th day on tight stocks, demand recovery

Three-month nickel on the London Metal Exchange nudged up 0.2% to $13,674 a tonne

Image used for illustrative purpose. Popular investment tools: precious metals; gold, silver, copper, platinum and crude oil placed on a globe with earth map.

Image used for illustrative purpose. Popular investment tools: precious metals; gold, silver, copper, platinum and crude oil placed on a globe with earth map.

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BEIJING - London nickel prices edged higher for a fourth straight session on Wednesday as low stock levels and recovering demand kept the metal used to make stainless steel at a six-month high.

Nickel has already gained 4.9 percent this month and is up 28.1 percent so far in 2019.

FUNDAMENTALS

NICKEL: Three-month nickel on the London Metal Exchange nudged up 0.2 percent to $13,674 a tonne as of 0148 GMT, after jumping by 3 percent in the previous session to post its highest close since Aug. 28.

SHFE NICKEL: The most-traded May nickel contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange rose as much as 1.9 percent to 106,380 yuan ($15,871) a tonne, its highest since Oct. 10, and stood at 105,950 yuan as of 0131 GMT.

NICKEL STOCKS: LME nickel inventories have fallen for 10 days in a row to under 200,000 tonnes.

ZINC: Shortages for a fourth year running and historically low stocks of zinc are likely to propel prices of the metal to $3,000 a tonne over coming months, while an end to the U.S.-China trade dispute could spur even more gains.

TRADE: U.S. President Trump will reject a U.S.-China trade deal that is not perfect, but the United States would still keep working on an agreement, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in a media interview. Pompeo had earlier said he thought the two sides were "on the cusp" of a deal to end their trade war, adding to positive signs about negotiations from both sides of the Pacific.

CHINA: Premier Li Keqiang said on Tuesday China would cut the value-added tax (VAT) for the manufacturing sector to 13 percent from 16 percent.

COPPER: Three-month LME copper nudged up 0.1 percent to $6,484 a tonne, while ShFE copper fell by 0.2 percent to 49,430 yuan a tonne.

INSIGHT: Codelco's lithium push fades in favour of copper.

COLUMN: China's supercharged imports fail to stir lead market: Andy Home.

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MARKETS NEWS

Asian stocks clung to tight ranges, as investors awaited fresh directional cues from U.S.-China trade negotiations and a weaker Wall Street finish capped broader gains, while robust U.S. economic data supported the dollar.

DATA AHEAD (GMT) 0030 Australia Real GDP Q4 1330 US Trade balance Dec

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 = 6.7030 Chinese yuan renminbi)

(Reporting by Tom Daly; editing by Richard Pullin)

© Reuters News 2019

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