EUROPEAN MORNING BRIEF 26/01: Most SHFE base metals under pressure; tough tariff expected from Section 232; Freeport’s profits soar in Q4

Good morning from Metal Bulletin’s office in Shanghai, as we bring you the latest news and pricing stories on Friday January 26.

Base metals prices on the Shanghai Futures Exchange were mostly lower during Asian morning trading on Friday after profit-taking emerged following a strong performance across the complex on Thursday.

Check Metal Bulletin’s live futures report here.

LME snapshot at 01.53am London time
Latest three-month LME Prices
Price ($ per tonne) Change since yesterday’s close ($)
Copper 7,098 -40
Aluminium 2,230 -11
Lead 2,588 -17
Zinc 3,447 -18
Tin /
Nickel 13,605 -80

SHFE snapshot at 09.53am Shanghai time
Most-traded SHFE contracts
Price (yuan per tonne) Change since yesterday’s close (yuan)
Copper 53,440 -400
Aluminium 14,750 -40
Zinc 26,200 -90
Lead 19,450 -200
Tin 147,650 760
Nickel 103,850 -890

The United States is expected to impose a strong tariff on aluminium imports as a result of the Commerce Department’s report on its Section 232 investigation, analysts said this week.

While the US brass scrap market stepped higher on firm domestic demand and stiff overseas competition, copper scrap remained lackluster due to ample supply and limited spot demand.

Freeport-McMoRan reported a strong finish to 2017, with net income drastically improved year on year for both the fourth quarter and full year, the company announced in an earnings release on Thursday January 25.

Analysts at Macquarie have cut their price forecasts for cobalt, citing easing tightness for the battery raw material in the coming years amid expectations of supply growth.

Molybdenum prices in China climbed to their highest level since March 2013 this past week, underpinned by concerns of tightening supply following the recent suspension of operations at a major mine and healthy demand from the domestic stainless steel sector.

The current rally in molybdic oxide and ferro-molybdenum prices has persisted this week, with deals reported pushing price ranges up to new highs although demand is slowing, sources told Metal Bulletin.

Selenium prices in Europe continued to move up this week on sustained robust demand from India, with rallying manganese flake prices adding new impetus to the market.

Metal Bulletin presents a summary of China’s minor metals exports and imports in December and the full year 2017.

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