London Zinc charges to 9-yr high, lead hits 5-yr high
MELBOURNE : London Metal Exchange zinc surged to its highest in nine years on Monday and lead hit a five-year peak as a searing rally in metals gained steam on a softer dollar and inflation expectations that pushed investors into commodities.
* LME zinc surged by more than 5 percent to $ 2,970 a tonne, which was its highest since October 2007.
* Sister metal LME lead surged more than 6 percent, matching Friday’s gains and its highest level in more than five years.
* Gains in copper were more muted, with the LME copper contract up 0.4 percent at $ 5,905 a tonne by 0021 GMT, after closing little changed in the previous session.
* In Shanghai, zinc and lead surged as much as 7 percent while ShFE copper eased 0.2 percent to 48,140 yuan ($ 6,959) a tonne in volatile trade.
* Investors have ploughed into metals on signs that a global recovery is gaining steam, improving the demand outlook for metals, and also as they price in more rate hikes next year. Hard assets are an attractive hedge against inflation because they tend to hold their value as interest rates rise, which cools gains in other asset classes.
* Profit growth in China’s industrial sector picked up in October, aided by stronger sales and higher prices, suggesting further strengthening of the world’s second-largest economy, although growth was skewed towards high-polluting heavy industry.
* Current conditions point to a stabilisation of China’s yuan after a volatile recent performance against the U.S. dollar, a central bank vice governor said on Sunday, adding that the currency remains strong.
* Global miner Anglo American Plc halted all activity at its Los Bronces mine in Chile after hooded protesters seized installations on Saturday in the second illegal occupation of the copper deposit this month, the company told Reuters.
* Chilean state-owned miner Codelco, the world’s top copper producer, increased output by 1.2 percent in January through September versus a year earlier.
* Some big aluminium producers seek a premium of $ 95-$ 110 per tonne from Japanese buyers for primary metal shipments in the January to March period, up 27-47 percent from the previous quarter, five sources said.
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