ASIAN MORNING BRIEF 14/12: LME base metals buoyed by reduced China-US trade tension; EC likely to set quarterly steel quotas; Protectionism not bad for base metals, Lipmann says

The latest news and price moves to start the Asian day on Friday December 14.

London Metal Exchange base metal prices were broadly higher on Thursday December 13 due to an easing in China-US trade tensions, with the three-month zinc contract gaining ground due to historic low inventories. Read more in our live futures report.

Here are how prices looked at the close of trading:

The European Commission is expected to set definitive measures in its safeguard investigation in the form of quarterly steel quotas for each exporting country, market sources told Fastmarkets.

The minor metals industry is facing turbulent times and increased volatility in all regions, but some things remain constant and there are always new opportunities if you know where to look, former MMTA chairman Anthony Lipmann said. “Protectionism is not necessarily a bad thing for our industry,” he added.

Brazil’s Companhia Siderúrgica Nacional plans to increase its iron ore production, focusing on pellet feed products in the next five years, an investor presentation showed.

As part of its series on blockchain in commodities, Fastmarkets takes a closer look at the evolution of blockchain networks for trade finance.

UK ferrous scrap prices for deliveries in December have uniformly dropped by £20 per tonne due to weaker export prices and a slowdown in domestic consumer demand, trade sources told Fastmarkets MB.

Turkish steel mills remain out
of the deep-sea scrap markets, and are unlikely to resume buying any time soon due to the continuing lack of demand for finished steel in the country’s domestic and export markets.