SHANGHAI, Mar. 24 (SMM) -- LME tin futures contract for delivery in three months opened at USD 30,100/mt over night, and closed at USD 31,325/mt, up by USD 1,175/mt from a day earlier, with the highest price at USD 31,450/mt and the lowest price at USD 30,000/mt. Daily trading volumes were 633 lots and positions were 20,332 lots. LME nickel inventories were down by 155 mt to 18050 mt.
LME base metal largely ended with gains on Wednesday from market expectation that metal demand will increase in the medium term, despite slight rebound of the US dollar. LME tin prices surged by 3.9% and closed above all moving averages. Transactions were relatively quiet during the Asian trading hours, but transactions became active and prices moved higher during the European trading hours.
Prospect of construction-driven demand will continue lend support for certain base metals. However, the specific economic losses caused by Japan’s disaster remain unknown.
The US Ministry of Commerce announced on Wednesday that the US new home sales in February were done sharply by 16.9% from a month earlier, with an annualized rate at the lowest of 250,000 units and previous estimation at 290,000 units, but this figure didn't weigh on base metal prices. Although the US home and commercial building construction industries are still very weak, the US economy is improving, pushing copper prices near record high. Meanwhile, exports and consumer spending is improving, and the auto industry is also robust, requiring more demand for copper.
Investors' focus is shifting to bright demand prospect and positive factors, thus LME copper take the lead to rebound among other base metals. Close attention should be paid to Japan's imports and exports data in February. Strong market fundamentals of tin will continue to strongly support LME tin prices, and SMM believes that LME tin prices may rebound to previous high.
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