SHANGHAI, Feb. 24 (SMM) -- LME nickel for delivery in three months opened at USD 20,130/mt and closed at USD 20,023/mt overnight, down USD 181/mt from a day earlier, with the highest price at USD 20,290 mt and the lowest price at USD 19,900/mt. Daily trading volumes were 1,964 lots, down by 407 lots. Positions were 104,050 lots, down by 365 lots. LME nickel inventories were 97,818 mt, down 198 mt from a day earlier.
During Thursday’s Asian trading hours, LME nickel prices fluctuated narrowly due to absent of solid news. During the European and the US trading hours, the US dollar index advanced on better-than-expected initial jobless claim, while the euro slipped as the euro zone cut its 2012 GDP forecast. In response, LME nickel prices were weighed below USD 20,000/mt.
Market has absorbed positive impact from improved Greek debt issue, and weak euro and relatively strong US dollar will not change significantly in the short term, which will weigh on LME nickel prices. SMM expects that LME nickel prices will fluctuate between USD 19,800-20,300/mt, and spot nickel prices will move in the RMB 136,000-140,000/mt range on Friday.