(Adds details and updates prices)
By Mai Nguyen
SINGAPORE, Aug 14 (Reuters) - London copper prices dropped on Wednesday as weak Chinese data indicated slowing demand for the red metal, while concerns over supplies eased as some of Peru’s top mines have resumed exports.
Copper exports from Peru’s port of Matarani have restarted after several weeks of suspension as anti-mining protests that had blocked key infrastructure in the country’s southern copper belt eased over the weekend.
China’s industrial output growth fell to a more than 17-year low and auto sales weakened in July, while fixed-asset investment growth during January-July was less than expected amid an intensifying trade war with the United States.
“The weakening of activity growth in July was the direct result of weaker domestic policy supports since the end of June. We believe the policy stance is likely being loosened again in August to support economic growth,” Goldman Sachs analysts said in a report.
Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange was down 0.6% at $5,792 a tonne, as of 0719 GMT, snapping a jump of 1.5% in the previous session supported by news that the United States would delay some tariffs on Chinese goods. The most-traded copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange eased 0.1% to 46,580 yuan ($6,641.57) a tonne.
“(The data is) still weaker than expected, semi-production is also at the same pace. The trade issue will last for a long time,” CRU’s copper analyst He Tianyu said.
“Trump’s policy and tweets will shift copper prices in very short time, (but) the real demand cannot change so quickly.”
* PRICES: London aluminium edged down 0.2%, nickel eased 0.1%, zinc dropped 1% and lead fell 0.7%. Shanghai aluminium dipped 0.1%, nickel rose 0.6%, while zinc increased 0.2%.
* ALUMINIUM: China produced 2.98 million tonnes of aluminium in July, down 2.2% year-on-year, its National Bureau of Statistics said, putting daily output at around 96,000 tonnes, down from around 99,000 tonnes in June.
* COPPER SCRAP: China issued a third batch of quotas for imports of recently restricted type of scrap metals, including another 87,680 tonnes of high-grade copper scrap, as the world’s top metals consumer continues to control waste shipments.
* U.S.-CHINA: U.S. President Donald Trump on Tuesday backed off his Sept. 1 deadline for 10% tariffs on some Chinese imports, while U.S and Chinese trade representatives conducted renewed trade discussions.
* INDONESIA ORE: Indonesia’s President Joko Widodo will make the final decision on whether the country brings forward an export ban on mineral ore that is currently due to come into force in 2022, the minister in charge of mining said on Tuesday.
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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 = 7.0134 Chinese yuan) (Reporting by Mai Nguyen; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta and Sherry Jacob-Phillips)