(Adds detail, updates prices)
MELBOURNE, March 30 London copper slipped on
Thursday in low-volume trade as the dollar held gains on
brighter economic signals from the United States and traders
waited for further U.S. and China economic cues for direction.
With the U.S. economy having now "largely attained" a full
recovery from recession, the Federal Reserve can raise interest
rates three or more times this year, a centrist Fed policymaker
said on Wednesday, helping support the dollar.
"So far in today's Asian session, traders seem to have
returned to selling but in very thin volumes, which could be no
more than profit-taking. So, once again people will look to the
European day for direction," said Malcolm Freeman of UK-based
broker Kingdom Futures in a report.
Cues for direction may come as soon as the final U.S.
fourth-quarter growth numbers are announced later in the
session, or when China's manufacturing figures are out on
Friday, he said.
* LME COPPER: London Metal Exchange copper had
slipped 0.5 percent to $5,879.50 a tonne by 0742 GMT. That pared
a 0.6-percent gain from the previous session, when prices hit
their highest since March 20 at $5,927.50.
* SHANGHAI COPPER: Shanghai Futures Exchange copper
rose 0.4 percent to 47,460 yuan ($6,881) a tonne.
* CHINA: China's economy, the world's second largest, will
likely expand 6.8 percent in the first quarter of 2017, the
official Xinhua agency quoted a government think-tank as saying.
* CHINA PROPERTY: Moody's Investors Service warned that the
financial risks facing China from a potential property downturn
have grown as record lending has made banks more risk-prone
while the government is less able to combat those risks.
* ESCONDIDA: Chile's Escondida named a new president to run
the BHP Billiton-operated mine on Thursday, days after the
company failed to clinch a wage deal with workers after an
historically long strike.
* ZINC FEES: Korea Zinc Inc, the world's
third-largest zinc smelter, has agreed to take a 15 percent drop
in annual processing fees for 2017 as smelters grapple with a
dearth of mine supply, Metal Bulletin reported.
* LME ALUMINIUM: Metals traders have positioned for further
rise in aluminium price, Kingdom Futures said, citing large
scale options buying around the $2,000 strike. LME aluminium
traded flat at $1960, having hit $1,963.50 earlier, its
highest since May 2015.
* MARKETS: Asian shares turned lower on Thursday after
touching near two-year highs, while the dollar benefited from
waning expectations that the European Central Bank was poised to
end its easy policy.
* COMING UP: 1230 U.S. GDP Final Q4
BASE METALS PRICES 0739 GMT
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
BASE METALS ARBITRAGE
(Reporting by Melanie Burton; Editing by Joseph Radford and