June 25, 2019 / 4:44 AM / a month ago

METALS-Copper rises on supply concerns, weaker dollar

(Updates prices)

By Mai Nguyen

SINGAPORE, June 25 (Reuters) - Copper prices advanced on Tuesday as extended strike at Codelco’s Chuquicamata copper mine raised concerns about supply, while a weaker dollar also lent some support.

Workers at Codelco’s sprawling Chuquicamata copper mine in Chile, rejected the company’s latest offer over the weekend, having been on strike since mid-June to demand better healthcare and retirement benefits from the world’s top copper producer.

“Supply side issues overweighed concerns about the economic backdrop. Copper prices remained supported by the ongoing strike at Codelco’s Chuquicamata copper mine,” said ANZ in a note.

The U.S. dollar on Tuesday slipped on the prospects of monetary easing by the Federal Reserve, boosting demand for dollar-denominated metals as they are now cheaper to import using other currencies.

Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange rose 0.5% to $5,991.50 a tonne by 0720 GMT, while the most-traded copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange (ShFE) advanced 0.6% to 47,090 yuan ($6,844.68) a tonne.

But the price hike was not stable, with copper prices at some point retreating back to almost being unchanged from the previous session amid uncertainty around Sino-U.S. trade war resolution and rising U.S.-Iran tensions.

“The fundamentals now have little impact on the futures market. Prices now have more connection with the macro side...such as exchange rate and trade war,” said CRU’s copper analyst He Tianyu based in Beijing.

Investors are keeping a close watch on a scheduled talk between U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping later this week, but sentiment was not helped by reports that Trump would be content with “any outcome”.

Trump said he viewed this week’s meeting with Xi as a chance to see where Beijing stands on the two countries’ trade war and is “comfortable with any outcome” from the talks. Meanwhile, China said both nations should make compromises in trade talks.

FUNDAMENTALS

* TESLA/JAPAN ALUMINIUM: The U.S. Commerce Department has agreed to Tesla Inc’s request to waive 10% tariffs on imported aluminium from Japan used in the manufacture of battery cells at Tesla’s Nevada Gigafactory.

* COPPER DEFICIT: The global world refined copper market showed a 51,000 tonnes deficit in March, compared with a 72,000 tonnes surplus in February, the International Copper Study Group said in its latest monthly bulletin.

* CHINA LEAD: China’s top lead maker Henan Yuguang Gold and Lead Co on Tuesday shut down one production line at a lead smelter in Jiyuan for a 30-day maintenance that will affect some 10,000 tonnes in output, its sales director said.

* SHFE LEAD: Lead futures prices on ShFE rose as much as 1.6% to near a one-week high of 16,290 yuan a tonne but retreated later to end up 1.3% at close.

* OTHER PRICES: Benchmark aluminium rose 0.6%, nickel increased 0.5% and zinc advanced 1.2%. In Shanghai, aluminium was 0.8% higher, nickel was up 1.1% while zinc jumped 2.4%.

* For the top stories in metals and other news, click or

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 = 6.8798 Chinese yuan renminbi)

Reporting by Mai Nguyen; editing by Uttaresh.V and Rashmi Aich

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