Shanghai base metal prices made a positive start to the second quarter on Monday as the US dollar slipped, making metals cheaper for holders of other currencies and supporting prices.
‘The second quarter should be not bad,’ said Xu Maili, director of non-ferrous metal research at Everbright Futures in Shanghai, noting that the April-June period was the peak season for metals consumption.
Of the five key Shanghai base metals, only nickel rose in the first quarter, while copper and aluminium posted double-digit losses.
The London Metal Exchange remains closed on Monday for the Easter holiday.
* SHFE COPPER: The most-traded May copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange (ShFE) closed up 0.8 per cent at 50,390 yuan ($US8,028.62) a tonne. Earlier in the session, it touched 50,600 yuan a tonne, its highest since March 23.
* ALUMINIUM: ShFE aluminium ended up 1.9 per cent at 13,990 yuan a tonne, its highest close since March 20, bouncing back from a 17-month low seen on Friday.
* ALUMINIUM: China has slapped extra tariffs of up to 25 per cent on 128 US products including scrap aluminium, in response to US duties on imports of aluminium and steel, China’s finance ministry said.
* USD: The US dollar index, which measures the greenback against a basket of six other major currencies, was down 0.2 per cent at 89.94.
* OTHER METALS: Nickel, used to make stainless steel, rose 1.6 per cent to 100,470 yuan a tonne, tracking a rise in the ferrous metals complex. Zinc added 0.4 per cent and lead rose one per cent.
* COPPER: China’s top copper smelters on Friday cut their minimum treatment and refining charges for copper concentrate by 10.3 per cent for the second quarter of 2018, two people with direct knowledge of the matter said.