MANILA, Nov. 20 -- Shanghai zinc futures hit their highest level in 18 months on Friday and LME prices jumped more than 2 percent, outpacing gains in other base metals on speculative buying, traders said.
Third month Shanghai zinc SZNc3 rallied 250 yuan to touch a high of 18,120 yuan ($2,653) a tonne, before easing to 18,005 yuan by 0134 GMT.
Three-month zinc on the London Metal Exchange MZN3 rose $50 to $2,265 a tonne, after rising as high as $2,274 earlier.
"Some speculative buyers who were in the market last Friday and earlier this week have returned to push prices higher," said a dealer in Shanghai.
Australia's Century zinc mine, which produces a third of the country's zinc output, was due to run out of concentrate at its shipping port earlier this week, prompting buyers to look for alternative sources.