NORTH AMERICAN MORNING BRIEF 22/11: LME issues OTC consultation; ArcelorMittal, Votorantim Brazil merger; China’s zinc premiums fall

The latest metal markets news and price moves to start the North American day on Wednesday November 22.

Copper and aluminium prices strengthened further on the London Metal Exchange in morning trading on Wednesday, with stock levels continuing to fall.
The three-month copper price was supported by concerns of supply disruptions after workers at Southern Copper Corp’s mines in Peru went on strike yesterday.

“Copper was stronger, after workers at Southern Copper mines in Peru began a strike. This has seen all operations halt production as discussions continue between the union and management,” ANZ Research noted on Wednesday.

Here’s how base metals prices looked on the LME at 12:14pm London time:

For a snapshot of exchange news, check out our futures report.

The London Metal Exchange has launched a consultation on its introduction of a new over-the-counter (OTC) booking fee and changes to rules in respect to third-party platforms.

The new proposed fee will be $1 per equivalent LME lot.

Base metals trader Ben Thomson and lead and zinc trader Nishchay Chadha, both based in Singapore, have left Trafigura, Metal Bulletin understands.

High grade, low cost offtake deals are key for junior zinc miners to compete for funds, Heron Resources said.

The company mainly oversees the Woodlawn zinc-copper mine, one of the few new zinc projects fully funded up to production in the market when miners compete for funds to bring production on stream.

The ArcelorMittal, Votorantim merger in Brazil is to be ‘refused or approved with restrictions’ scrap group says.

The acquisition of local long steel producer Votorantim Siderurgia by ArcelorMittal’s Brazilian subsidiary will not be approved by national competition regulator Cade according to domestic scrap association Inesfa.

Metal Bulletin launches today - Wednesday November 22 - an aluminium ingot ADC12 ex-works China, duty-paid price assessment.

As for the latest premiums of base metals, zinc premiums fell slightly in China this week, which is reflected in a closed arbitrage window - losses incurred on imports into China widened to around $70 per tonne on November 20.

Lead premiums in India also weakened to $30-40 per tonne this week after consumers priced themselves out of the spot market apart from for very low offers.

Meanwhile, Shanghai nickel premiums rose this week on positive import arbitrage, but tighter credit and more bills of ladings arriving limited upside on Tuesday November 21.

On the copper side, lackluster buying interest and ample stock availability have weighed on the spot premiums in Rotterdam and Germany this week. Several Europe-based traders told Metal Bulletin they are struggling to settle next year’s annual contracts terms as the well-stocked customers are avoiding buying through long-term contracts.

For more on our base metals premiums, check out our weekly roundup of the state of base metal premiums in the week to Tuesday November 22.

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