July 30, 2018 / 3:02 AM / 3 months ago

METALS-Copper dives as data deluge overshadows mine strike

 (Adds Shanghai closing prices, updates London prices)
    By Melanie Burton
    MELBOURNE, July 30 (Reuters) - London copper fell sharply on
Monday as investors shrugged off a potential strike at the
world's largest copper mine and focused instead on a raft of
economic reports that may indicate slowing growth in top metals
consumer China.
    "The prices of industrial metals could take a hit early in
the week as we expect both the 'official' and Caixin China
manufacturing PMIs to have fallen in July," Capital Economics
said in a report. 
    China's official purchasing manager index (PMI) gauge, which
is mostly concerned with orders at state-owned enterprises, is
due on Tuesday while the Caixin report, an indicator of the
health of smaller firms, will be released on Wednesday. 
   Growth in China's factory sector is expected to have slowed
for a second month in July amid softer domestic investment and
as the worsening trade dispute with the United States clouds the
outlook for external demand.
     
    FUNDAMENTALS
    * COPPER: London Metal Exchange copper traded at
$6,176.50 a tonne by 0704 GMT, down 1.9 percent, having finished
2.4 percent higher last week when it broke a six-week string of
losses. Prices are down 14.7 percent this year. Shanghai Futures
Exchange copper closed down 1.4 percent at 49,360 yuan
($7,226.94) a tonne.
    * US ECONOMY: The U.S. economy grew at its fastest pace in
nearly four years in the second quarter as consumers boosted
spending and farmers rushed shipments of soybeans to China to
beat retaliatory trade tariffs before they took effect in early
July.
    * STRIKE: Workers at Chile's Escondida copper mine, the
world's largest, have rejected the company's final contract
offer and agreed to vote on whether to take strike action,
according to an internal union document seen by Reuters on
Friday.
    * ZINC: Three-month LME zinc fell as much as 3.2
percent to $2,512 a tonne, its lowest since July 19, and is down
23.9 percent so far in 2018 on concerns about oversupply.
Shanghai zinc ended down 1.9 percent.
    * CHINA DEMAND: China's capital Beijing will shut around
1,000 manufacturing firms by 2020 as part of a programme aimed
at curbing smog and boosting income in neighbouring regions,
state media said on Monday.
    * INVESTORS: Hedge funds and money managers raised their net
short position in copper futures and options in the latest week
to the highest in more than a year, data from the Commodity
Futures Trading Commision showed.
    * For the top stories in metals and other news, click       
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    MARKETS NEWS    
    * Asian share markets drifted lower on Monday while
currencies kept to familiar ranges at the start of a busy week
peppered with central bank meetings, corporate results and
updates on U.S. inflation and payrolls.    
    PRICES    
 BASE METALS PRICES                          0703 GMT
 Three month LME copper                          6172
 Most active ShFE copper                        49340
 Three month LME aluminium                       2060
 Most active ShFE aluminium                     14410
 Three month LME zinc                            2524
 Most active ShFE zinc                          20935
 Three month LME lead                          2118.5
 Most active ShFE lead                          18435
 Three month LME nickel                         13730
 Most active ShFE nickel                       111670
 Three month LME tin                            19810
 Most active ShFE tin                          147720
                                                     
 BASE METALS ARBITRAGE                               
 LME/SHFE COPPER               LMESHFCUc3       536.6
 LME/SHFE ALUMINIUM            LMESHFALc3    -1813.78
 LME/SHFE ZINC                 LMESHFZNc3      455.62
 LME/SHFE LEAD                 LMESHFPBc3      890.15
 LME/SHFE NICKEL               LMESHFNIc3     1725.19
 ($1 = 6.8300 Chinese yuan)

    
 (Reporting by Melanie Burton and Tom Daly in BEIJING; editing
by Eric Meijer and Subhranshu Sahu)
  
 
 
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