April 11, 2008 / 3:03 PM / 9 years ago

Early U.S. copper futures fluctuate with dollar

NEW YORK, April 11 (Reuters) - U.S. copper futures at the New York Mercantile Exchange's COMEX division fluctuated in early business on Friday, with the market taking its short-term cue from the volatile swings in the U.S dollar, traders said.

NOTE: For detailed report click on [MTL]

* Active May copper HGK8 up 1.30 cent at $3.9370 a lb by 10:45 a.m. EDT (1445 GMT). Range was $3.9020 to $3.9765.

* On Thursday, May hit a new contract high at $4.0390. It was the highest level for a second-month contract on a spot continuation basis since May 2006.

* Volume estimated at 10,605 lots by 10 a.m.

* Volume relatively light due to meeting of the Group of Seven finance ministers, which could dictate direction of dollar.

* The dollar resumed its downward trend against the euro early Friday, after weaker U.S. consumer confidence readings in April highlighted ongoing concerns about the health of the economy.

* The euro was last up 0.5 percent at $1.5829 EUR=, versus $1.5825 before the data.

* The Reuters/University of Michigan Surveys of Consumers' preliminary index of confidence fell to 63.2 in April from 69.5 in March.

* Longer-term fundamental and technical outlook seen strong to promote higher copper prices - trader.

* Weak U.S. dollar, fears of supply shortages, and hedge fund interest all seen behind copper's drive to record highs above $4 a pound - CRU. [ID:nN11379866]

* Stiff resistance at $4 seen more mental than technical - trader.

* Higher imports from China, the world's leading consumer, provide early price support.

* Chinese imports of unwrought copper and semi-finished products up 6 percent in March at 240,634 tonnes. [ID:nSP70369]

* April imports into China may decline from March due to wide price gap between Shanghai and London since last month - analyst.

* A 1 percent build in Shanghai copper warehouse stocks in line with market expectations.

* Copper inventories in warehouses monitored by the Shanghai Futures Exchange rose to 58,890 tonnes from 58,195 tonnes the previous week.

* London Metal Exchange-monitored warehouse stocks drop 950 tonnes to 115,150 tonnes <LME/STX1>. Stockpiles are down 40 percent since the start of the year.

* COMEX stocks were flat at 11,931 short tons on Thursday.

* Bullish news from the CRU-sponsored copper seminar in Chile and the ISRI convention in Nevada this week seen lending support to the red metal's recent upside momentum - analyst. [ID:nN07225015]

* LME copper for delivery in three months MCU3 at $8,660 a tonne, up $40 from Thursday, when it came within $2 of its $8,820 record. (Reporting by Chris Kelly; Editing by Walter Bagley)

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