June 26, 2018 / 1:53 AM / 5 months ago

METALS-LME copper eases for second day, zinc near 10-month low

SINGAPORE, June 26 (Reuters) - London copper prices slid for a second session on Tuesday with pressure from escalating trade tensions between the United States and top metals consumer China.

Zinc edged lower to trade near last session’s lowest since early August as rising inventories weighed on prices.

The U.S.-China trade spat is putting pressure on commodity and financial markets. A government official told Reuters on Sunday that the Treasury was drafting curbs that would block firms with at least 25 percent Chinese ownership from buying U.S. companies with “industrially significant technology.”

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on Monday said forthcoming investment restrictions would not be specific to China, but would apply “to all countries that are trying to steal our technology.”

FUNDAMENTALS

COPPER: Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange was down 0.4 percent at $6,731 a tonne, as of 0136 GMT, and the most-traded copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange lost 0.7 percent to 51,510 yuan ($7,883.86) a tonne.

ZINC: Benchmark LME zinc fell 0.1 percent to $2,855 a tonne after dropping in the last session to $2,835 a tonne, the weakest since August 7. In China, zinc prices fell to their lowest since early August at 22,380 yuan a tonne.

INVENTORIES: Daily data showed zinc on-warrant inventories - those not earmarked for delivery - in warehouses certified by the London Metal Exchange rose 2,300 tonnes to 241,525 tonnes. They have shot up 83 percent since the beginning of March. MZNSTX-TOTAL

CENTRAL BANK: China’s central bank said on Sunday it would cut the amount of cash that some banks must hold as reserves by 50 basis points (bps), releasing $108 billion in liquidity, to accelerate the pace of debt-for-equity swaps and spur lending to smaller firms.

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MARKETS NEW

* Global stocks extended a sell-off on Tuesday as the mounting trade tensions between the United States and other major economies continued to steer investors away from riskier assets, lifting safe-haven U.S. Treasuries and keeping the dollar on the defensive.

DATA/EVENTS 1300 U.S. S&P/Case-Shiller housing index April 1400 U.S. Consumer confidence June 1400 U.S. Richmond Fed composite index June

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 = 6.5336 Chinese yuan)

Reporting by Naveen Thukral, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips

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