London copper prices rebounded from five-month lows on Friday, on track for their first weekly gain in eight weeks.
Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange rose 0.4% to $5,833 a tonne by 0645 GMT. On a weekly basis, it has edged up 0.1%. If this level is retained until the session’s close, it would be the first gain since the week ended April 12.
“As seems to be becoming a pattern, after spending the week under pressure, metals are rallying on what looks to be nothing more than shorts squaring up at the end of the week, and so far on very thin volumes,” said Malcolm Freeman of Kingdom Futures in a note.
The base metals market was also trading in holiday-thinned volume during Asian trading hours. China is on a public holiday for the Dragon Boat Festival, and the Shanghai Futures Exchange is closed as a result.
“It’s a Chinese holiday. So people only have LME to hedge now. Likely, it’s short covering after such a down move,” said a trader based in Singapore.
* NYRSTAR: Nyrstar has halted production at its Port Pirie lead and zinc smelter in Australia and declared force majeure, the Belgian-headquartered metals and mining company said on Thursday.
* ZINC AND LEAD: Zinc prices rose 0.5% but lead fell 0.8% from a one-month high hit in the previous session amid lower stockpiles and a major smelter outage. Nickel and aluminium were almost unchanged.
* CODELCO: Unions at Chile’s Chuquicamata copper mine expressed disappointment in state-run miner Codelco’s latest contract offer on Thursday but agreed to extend negotiations in hopes of averting a strike.
* CHINA: China announced a series of measures on Thursday to revive slumping car sales, but failed to meet market expectations as it included no plans to relax controls over the issuance of new licenses for traditional-fuel cars in major cities.
* U.S.-CHINA: U.S. President Donald Trump said on Thursday he would decide whether to carry out his threat to hit Beijing with tariffs on at least $300 billion in Chinese goods after the G20 summit in Japan late this month. [nL8N23D1TL
* LYNAS: Lynas Corp is making an aggressive push for fresh business across the globe and billing itself as the best option for its customers to tap diversified supplies of rare earth minerals as major supplier China threatened to curb exports.