SHANGHAI, Mar. 15 (SMM) -- Last Friday, the US announced that the retail sales in February rose by 0.3%, better than analysts' prediction of a decline of 0.3%, while the retail sales in January were revised to be a growth of 0.1%. However, the Reuters/University of Michigan's consumer confidence index in early March fell to 72.5, while analysts predicted the index would rise to 74, and the index in February was 73.6. The bailout plans for Greece debt crisis showed positive signs, and the short-term strong momentum of the Euro caused the US dollar index to fall to below 80. However, LME copper prices declined slightly due to market concerns over the tighter money supply, as well as weak expectations of the consumption recovery in the US, while LME aluminum prices remained strong, and closed at USD 2,267/mt, up USD 32/mt. SMM predicts SHFE aluminum prices will continue to fluctuate today, and SHFE 1006 aluminum contract prices will test the resistance level of RMB 17,000/mt, with special focus on changes of recent spot consumption.
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