LIVE FUTURES REPORT 01/03: LME base metals consolidate recent gains; Ni reaches $13,400/t

Base metals prices on the London Metal Exchange were mixed at the close of trading on Friday March 1, with a continued trend of record-low inventories failing to spur persistent price rallies amid broad strength in the US dollar index.

Both copper and nickel futures remain well supported, while volumes were moderate over the afternoon, with copper leading the complex at 19,890 lots changing hands and nickel recording its largest volume count since September 2018 at 11,883 lots traded. Some 22,000 tonnes of copper remains available for delivery on the exchange, its lowest level since 2005. Should total on-warrant stock levels dip below 21,500 tonnes, the metal’s deliverable stock count would be at its lowest level since 1974.  “[Copper’s price rebound] is driven by stronger Chinese risk sentiment after the release of stronger-than-expected Caixin manufacturing PMI for February. This signals that China's economic growth is picking up due to the recent raft of Chinese policy relaxations in recent months,” Fastmarkets analyst Boris Mikanikrezai said in his Copper Today report.  “Recent US macro data (eg....

Published

Hassan Butt

March 01, 2019

17:45 GMT

London