SHANGHAI, Mar. 18 (SMM) -- The US Labor Department announced on Thursday that the initial application for jobless benefits fell to 385,000 in the week ending March 12th, better than the expected level. The US Conference Board announced that the leading indicators in February rose by 0.8%, also beating forecast. The yen continued to strengthen due to investor expectations of Japanese reconstruction, with the yen against US dollar setting a new high of 76.36 yen since the World War II. In response, the US dollar weakened significantly, with the index opening at 76.61 and closing at 75.99, down 0.81%.
Positive economic data and weaker US dollar helped push up LME base metals prices, with LME aluminum prices opening at an intraday low of USD 2,466/mt but closing at USD 2,520/mt, up USD 53/mt compared with the previous trading day. LME aluminum inventories fell further by 1,050 mt to 4,619,400 mt.
Today, SHFE aluminum prices opened higher, with SHFE 1105 aluminum contract prices again standing above the 5-day moving average and expected to test the resistance at RMB 16,600/mt.
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