September 13, 2012 / 2:31 AM / 5 years ago

METALS-LME copper steady ahead of Fed decision

SHANGHAI, Sept 13 (Reuters) - Copper was steady on Thursday,
with some investors taking profits ahead of a key Federal
Reserve meeting later in the session, though most remained
optimistic of further stimulus action to bolster the world's
largest economy.
    Prices were also supported by a German court ruling on
Wednesday that paved the way for Europe to proceed with its
bailout schemes. 
    "Some longs prefer to take profit ahead of the (Fed)
meeting, since they've already made money on their positions and
because there is always a chance that the Fed won't start
another round of quantitative easing - even if many people
expect it," said a Shanghai-based trader with an international
    * Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange 
had ticked up 0.1 percent to $8,100 per tonne by 0228 GMT, after
rising 5.1 percent over the past four sessions. 
    * The most active January copper contract on the Shanghai
Futures Exchange edged up 0.1 percent to 58,360 yuan
($9,200) per tonne.
    * A Reuters poll showed economists raised their bets of a
third round of Fed bond buying, known as quantitative easing
(QE), to 65 percent from 60 percent in August. 
    * Expectations the Fed will act are fueling speculation that
China also may ease policy soon to shore up its cooling economy.
    * China said on Wednesday it would pay export tax rebates
faster and grant more loans to exporters, as well as increase
export credit insurance to small companies, in its latest move
to prop up growth. 
    * Germany's Constitutional Court gave the green light for
the country to ratify Europe's new bailout fund, boosting hopes
that the single currency bloc is finally putting in place the
tools to resolve its three-year old debt crisis. 
    * For the top stories in metals and other news, click
, or 
    * Asian shares eased on Thursday ahead of the Fed's
decision, while the euro held near a four-month high.
1230  U.S.  Weekly jobless claims         
1230  U.S.  PPI           August          
1630  U.S. FOMC releases statement after policy meeting 
1800  U.S. Federal budget for August 
1815  U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke holds news 
  Base metals prices at 0228 GMT
  Metal              Last       Change   Pct Move YTD pct chg
  LME Cu            8100.00      4.00     +0.05      6.58
  SHFE CU FUT JAN3    58360        50     +0.09      4.91
  LME Alum          2081.25     -4.75     -0.23      3.03
  SHFE AL FUT DEC2    15745       -50     -0.32     -0.60
  HG COPPER DEC2     369.60      0.35     +0.09      7.57
  LME Zinc          2009.00     -9.00     -0.45      8.89
  SHFE ZN FUT DEC2    15435       -65     -0.42      4.33
  LME Nickel       16660.00     10.00     +0.06    -10.96
  LME Lead          2115.00    -10.00     -0.47      3.93
  SHFE PB FUT         15850       -60     -0.38      3.66
  LME Tin          20795.00      0.00     +0.00      8.31
  LME/Shanghai arb    1603
   Shanghai and COMEX contracts show most active months
   ^ LME 3-m copper in yuan, including 17 pct VAT, minus SHFE 
 third month
 ($1 = 6.3264 Chinese yuan)

 (Reporting by Carrie Ho; Editing by Joseph Radford)

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