SHANGHAI, Mar. 28 (SMM) -- LME nickel for delivery in three months opened at USD 26,910/mt and closed at USD 27,074/mt, up by USD 134/mt from a day earlier, with the highest price at USD 27,280/mt and the lowest price at USD 26,800/mt. Daily trading volumes were 1,381 lots and positions were 107,473 lots. LME tin inventories were up by 660 mt to 124,254 mt.
LME base metal prices closed mixed last Friday. LME nickel prices firstly slipped but later rallied during the Asian trading hours. Prices fluctuated higher during the European trading hours, but slipped significantly at the tail of the trading due to surge of the US dollar index. The speech of Federal Reserves' chairman suggested expectation of interest rate. In response, the US dollar index surged on Friday, weighing on base metal prices to certain extent.
Last Friday's better-than-expected GDP in 4Q announced by the US boosted market confidence, and pushed the US equity market higher. An annualized of the US GDP in 4Q was up by 3.1% on a quarterly basis, while market expectation was up by 3.0% and the previous reading was up by 2.8%.
In addition, investors also concerned over the European sovereign debt crisis and the Middle East unrest. Fitch downgraded Portugal's credit rating to "A-" from "A+", with a negative outlook. A reflection that the country faces growing risks in policy implementation and financing as the country refused to adopt austerity plan In addition, the western coalition forces' attack on Libya has entered into the seventh day.
Recent rebound of the US dollar weighed on base metals to certain extent, but positive demand outlook and improvement in global economy also attract investors back into base metal market. At present, base metal prices are on upward track. LME nickel prices still moved around 60-day moving average, and will continue to test stability at this level. SMM expects that LME nickel prices will meet resistant in the USD 27,000-27,500/mt range and receive support at USD 26,200/mt.
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