Copper prices fell Wednesday as declining premiums and rising inventories showed signs of weaker-than-expected demand in China, the world’s largest consumer of metals.
Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange fell 0.8% to $ 8,975.50 a tonne by 07:15 GMT, while May’s most traded copper on the Shanghai Futures Exchange fell 0.5% to 66,900 yuan (US $ 10,226.86) per ton.
Yangshan premium copper SMM-CUYP-CN last stood at $ 57 / t, the lowest since November 30, 2020, indicating low demand for imported copper in China, where consumption is expected to be high in the second quarter.
Meanwhile, stocks in LME and ShFE warehouses are growing.
“Currently, as copper prices are still relatively high, purchases in the downstream segment are still not very high,” Huatai Futures said in a note.
“But with the onset of the peak season, purchases in the refining and distribution segment will gradually begin to recover, and the drawdown in the second quarter is still a relatively high event,” they said.
The fall in metal prices also came amid fears of a tightening of policy in China after recent strong economic data from the world’s second largest economy, which has already put pressure on the stock market.
* Aluminum on the London Metal Exchange fell 0.75% to $ 2,253 per tonne, nickel remained virtually unchanged at $ 16,735 per tonne, while tin rose 0.6% to $ 25,970 per tonne.
* Aluminum ShFE fell 0.5% to RMB 17,460 / t, tin fell 0.6% to RMB 184,820 / t and zinc rose 0.3% to RMB 21,865 / t.
Refined tin production by major Indonesian tin producer PT Timah is expected to decline 25.6% to 34,000 tons per year in 2021, while sales of the product are expected to fall 44.4% per year to 31,000 tons this year, the spokesman said. companies.
* However, Indonesia’s refined tin exports jumped 33.1% in March from 6,043.21 tonnes a year earlier.
Source: Reuters (May Nguyen report; editing by Uttaresh V. and Sherri Jacob-Phillips and Kirsten Donovan)