BEIJING, Jan. 4 -- Aluminum Corp. of China Ltd., the country's largest producer of the metal, raised spot alumina prices for the third time in five months as smelters start to stock the material before the Lunar New Year holiday.
Prices for the material used to make aluminum increased by 5.7 percent to 2,800 yuan ($410) a metric ton from Jan. 1, the Beijing-based company known as Chalco said today on its Web site. Chalco raised prices by 3.9 percent on Sept. 30, and 6.3 percent on Sept. 1.
"Aluminum smelters normally increase purchases of alumina one month ahead of the Lunar New Year to avoid the railway bottlenecks during the holiday season," said Wan Ling, an analyst at CRU International Ltd. The holiday starts Feb. 14 and will last a week.
Aluminum futures in Shanghai have gained 17 percent since Sept. 30 as China's 4 trillion yuan stimulus spending boosted use of the metal in automobiles and construction. Smelters have restarted idled plants since April as prices rebounded.
Chalco increased by 2.1 percent to HK$8.73 at 10:50 a.m. local time in Hong Kong trading. In Shanghai, the stock fell 0.6 percent to 14.39 yuan at the same time.