EUROPEAN MORNING BRIEF 24/09: Heightened trade tensions sink LME base metals; US extends Rusal deadline; Europe ali scrap prices dragged lower

Good morning from Metal Bulletin’s offices in Asia as we bring you the latest news and pricing stories on Monday September 24.

Three-month base metals prices on the London Metal Exchange were down across the board during early trading on Monday, with a ratcheting up of global trade tensions sapping the positivity seen in the market last week.

The base metals’ weaker showing this morning follows China’s decision on Saturday to withdraw from planned trade talks with the United States and the imposition of fresh tariffs between the two nations on Monday.

In China, the Shanghai Futures Exchange was closed on Monday in observance of the Mid-Autumn Festival.

Check Metal Bulletin’s live futures report here.

The US Treasury Department has extended the deadline for companies to wind down operations and contracts with UC Rusal from October 23 to November 12.

Aluminium scrap prices in Europe fell to their lowest in several years, with a supply overhang continuing to batter the market.

Copper mining group Antofagasta Minerals will start to extract molybdenum at its Centinela Mine in Chile from next year, with production ramping up to 2.000 tonnes in 2019, the company announced earlier this month.

Shares in Nyrstar NV, the world’s second-largest zinc smelting company, fell by more than 30% on September 21 after the company flagged that “adverse market conditions” would hit its third-quarter earnings, prompting a credit downgrade from ratings agency Moody’s.

Ganfeng Lithium has signed a supplementary contract with LG Chem to extend its offtake agreement for a further three years to the end of 2025, it said on September 20.