LIVE FUTURES REPORT 16/10: SHFE base metals diverge amid consolidation, dollar bounce

Base metals traded on the Shanghai Futures Exchange (SHFE) were mixed during Asian morning trading on Monday October 16, with increases seen in tin, lead and nickel prices, while the rest were weaker as the complex consolidated gains made in the previous week and the dollar staged a recovery.

The most-traded December zinc contract on the SHFE stood at 25,985 yuan ($3,949) per tonne of 03:50 BST, down 290 yuan as prices consolidated after they rose to a near decade high of 27,350 yuan per tonne on October 9.

“The surge in ferrous contract prices has boosted market sentiment and SHFE zinc prices … SHFE zinc should continue its uptrend,” China’s Ruida Futures said late last Friday.

SHFE base metals prices had broadly rallied last week, boosted by strong gains in ferrous contracts, optimism ahead of the upcoming 13th Five-Year Plan meeting at the 19th Party Congress in Beijing this week, a weaker dollar and strong data, including that for copper imports.

China imported 1.47 million tonnes of copper ore and concentrates in September, the highest since March, when 1.63 million tonnes was brought into the county. September’s volumes were 2% higher month on month and 6% higher year on year, according to preliminary customs data released on October 13.

In September, China’s unwrought copper and copper-fabricated products imports climbed to 430,000 tonnes, matching this year’s high in March.

A recovery in the dollar has also put pressure on the base metals complex this morning. The dollar index rebounded 0.13% to 93.18 as of 03:39 BST. This after falling as low as 92.75 on October 13, the lowest since September 26.

Base metals prices

  • The SHFE December copper price fell 20 yuan to 53,390 yuan per tonne.
  • The SHFE December aluminium contract slipped 135 yuan to 16,535 yuan per tonne.
  • The SHFE December zinc contract dipped 290 yuan to 25,985 yuan per tonne.
  • The SHFE January tin price was up 780 yuan to 147,700 yuan per tonne.
  • The SHFE December lead contract gained 45 yuan to 20,315 yuan per tonne.
  • The SHFE January nickel price increased 520 yuan to 92,810 yuan per tonne.

Currency moves and data releases

  • The dollar index was recently up 0.13% to 93.18 on Monday.
  • In other commodities, the Brent crude oil spot price was up 1.14% to $57.81 per barrel as of 03:40 BST.
  • In equities, the Shanghai Composite Index was recently up 0.15% to 3,395.66.
  • In US data released on Friday, retail sales grew 1.6% in September, slightly below the consensus of 1.7%. Core retail sales over the same period stood at 1.0%. The consumer price index (CPI) and core CPI for last month both disappointed at 0.5% and 0.1%, respectively.
  • In Chinese data, the September CPI was in line with its projected reading at 1.6%, while the producer price index for last month was above expectations at 6.9%.
  • It is a thin day for economic data with mainly the US Empire State manufacturing index of note.
SHFE snapshot at 1043 Shanghai time
Most traded SHFE contracts
Price (yuan/t) Change since Friday’s close (yuan)
Copper 53,390 -20
Aluminium 16,535 -135
Zinc 25,985 -290
Lead 20,315 45
Tin 147,700 780
Nickel 92,810 520

LME snapshot at 0350 London time
Latest 3M LME Prices
Price ($/t) Change since Friday’s close ($)
Copper 6,893.50 11.5
Aluminium 2,143 9.5
Lead 2,555 25
Zinc 3,244 9
Tin 20,745 145
Nickel 11,635 -40
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