SHANGHAI, Mar. 23 (SMM) –The US and European markets continued to digest the soft Chinese manufacturing data Thursday. Later, the euro zone announced the Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) worsened unexpectedly in March, dragged down by significant drops in French and German manufacturing activities, causing the euro to dive and pushing commodity markets down. Even the announcement of an upbeat reading in the US employment data in the evening was unable to stop the falling momentum. Investors conducted profit-taking for risk aversion, while US equity markets closed down. Extending the losses registered in the Asian trading session, LME copper prices slid below the 60-day moving average to USD 8,262/mt before finally ending at USD 8,313/mt, down nearly 1.6%, but did show more resilience compared with other base metals.
Markets will turn to absorb positive economic data from the US following the previous day's considerable declines for LME copper prices, which are expected to make corrections and move between USD 8,280-8,380/mt during Friday's Asian trading session. Chinese stock markets will open lower. SHFE copper prices will meet new resistance at RMB 59,500/mt after a low open, and test support at the RMB 59,000/mt mark, while SHFE 1206 copper contract prices will fluctuate in the RMB 58,800-59,500/mt range. Spot copper discounts are estimated to narrow to between negative RMB 250-150/mt versus SHFE 1204 copper contracts.