SHANGHAI, July 30 (SMM) -- LME base metals prices extended gains yesterday. LME aluminum prices opened at USD 2,070/mt, with the highest level and the lowest level at USD 2,113/mt and USD 2,058/mt, respectively, and finally ended at USD 2,094/mt, up USD 25/mt compared with the previous trading day, or up 1.2%. Total trading volumes reported 86,282 lots, and total positions fell by 6,531 lots. LME aluminum inventories declined further by 4,500 mt to 4,390,625 mt.
The US government announced the initial jobless claims last week fell to 457,000, lower than market expected, helping boost market confidence in US employment, but market concerns over the Federal Reserve officials' cautious remarks on US economy and pessimistic manufacturing data still persisted. As a result, the US stocks closed with declines yesterday, and the European stock markets declined as well due to profit-taking. The Euro-zone economic confidence in July rose to a two-year high, pushing up the euro to 1.31 against the US dollar, and the US dollar index dipped in response. The lower US dollar index helped support base metals prices, and LME aluminum prices remained firm despite of weaker transactions, with prices even climbing to above the pressure level of USD 2,100/mt, but finally prices slipped at the closing.
SHFE 1010 aluminum contract prices are expected to hold steady at the 5-day moving average and continue to test the RMB 15,500/mt resistance level today. The steady increases in aluminum prices are expected to boost downstream buying interest, and bullish stock markets recently will also help drive up SHFE aluminum prices. Hence, SMM predicts SHFE 1010 aluminum contract prices will move between RMB 15,400-15,600/mt today.
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