ASIAN MORNING BRIEF 02/08: Nickel drives drop in LME base metals; spot copper TC/RCs end July lower; Sherritt expects high-purity nickel shortage after 2018

The latest news and price moves to start the Asian day on Thursday August 2.

Nickel prices tumbled on the London Metal Exchange on Wednesday August 1, with recent gains unraveling amid a fresh trade rift between the United States and China. Read more in our live futures report.

Here are how prices looked at the close of trading:


Spot copper concentrate treatment and refining charges (TC/RCs) dropped at the end of July after labor negotiations soured at Escondida, the world’s largest copper mine.

A shortage of high-purity nickel is expected to be seen after 2018 because current market prices are below the incentive levels needed to develop new nickel projects, according to Canadian nickel and cobalt producer Sherritt International.

Zinc and lead smelter Nyrstar is ambivalent to changing dynamics in the zinc concentrates market, playing down attempts by Teck Resources over the past month to lower its reliance on long-term smelter partners.

Rio Tinto’s iron ore shipments rose during the six months ended June 30, along with its production of iron ore, hard coking coal mined copper, refined copper and bauxite, according to its first-half production results.

AK Steel wants US President Donald Trump’s administration to implement Section 232 protections on downstream products, such as transformers, that use electrical steels, company executives said.

ArcelorMittal reported a 45.5% year-on-year jump in its second-quarter earnings results released on August 1, citing higher steel prices.

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