EUROPEAN MORNING BRIEF 25/04: Global copper premiums largely stable; falling aluminium prices curb alumina gains; new permitting issue at Freeport’s Indonesian unit

Good morning from Metal Bulletin’s offices in Asia as we bring you the latest news and pricing stories on Wednesday April 25.

Base metals prices on the Shanghai Futures Exchange were broadly higher during Asian morning trading on Wednesday April 25, after buying sentiment in China picked up following comments from the country’s central government which suggested a degree of flexibility in its monetary tightening policy.

Check Metal Bulletin’s live futures report here.

LME snapshot at 03.30am London time
Latest three-month LME Prices
  Price ($ per tonne) Change since yesterday’s close ($)
Copper 6,977 -36
Aluminium 2,202 -25
Lead 2,327 17
Zinc 3,223.50 11.5
Tin 21,075 -25
Nickel 14,130 145
SHFE snapshot at 10.32am Shanghai time
Most-traded SHFE contracts
  Price (yuan per tonne) Change since yesterday’s close (yuan)
Copper (June) 51,650 120
Aluminium (June) 14,430 45
Zinc (June) 24,430 0
Lead (June) 18,310 -55
Tin  (July) 146,470 180
Nickel  (September) 103,560 230

Copper premiums remained largely stable around the world this past week. While European premiums were supported by strong industrial demand and low scrap availability, little import interest was reported in Shanghai. In the United States, the number of spot deals has started to increase, which could be a sign that the long-awaited rise in premiums might happen soon.

Alumina prices set a fresh multi-year high on Tuesday, consolidating above $700 per tonne with no immediate respite in supply restrictions on the cards.

A new permitting issue has emerged at copper producer Freeport-McMoRan’s unit in Indonesia following the introduction of new environmental requirements in April, the United States-based firm said on Tuesday.

Emirates Global Aluminium has completed construction of the calcination process facility at its Al Taweelah alumina refinery in Abu Dhabi, and is expected to produce its first alumina in the first half of 2019.

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