SHANGHAI, Jan. 10 (SMM) – LME copper prices stayed within their previous trading range overnight. SHFE 1304 copper contract, the most active one, opened slightly RMB 30/mt up at RMB 58,350/mt Wednesday, and fluctuated narrowly during the day. With heavy pressure, the contract touched a high at RMB merely 58,360/mt, and a low at RMB 58,160/mt, looking support at the RMB 58,000/mt level. SHFE 1304 copper contract settled RMB 20/mt or 0.02% higher at RMB 58,340/mt, with trading volumes and positions down 66,832 lots and 912 lots, respectively. Total trading volumes on the SHFE decreased 90,148 lots, but total positions increased 1,270 lots. Speculative interest of both long and short investors abated, but with good support at the 5-day moving average, SHFE copper prices will continue fluctuating at current levels ahead of the releases of China's economic figures.
Since SHFE copper prices fluctuated near current values, Shanghai spot copper discounts were stable between negative RMB 60-150/mt in the morning business. Traded prices for standard-quality copper were between RMB 57,480-57,520/mt, and RMB 57,550-57,600/mt for high-quality copper. The price differential between SHFE 1301 and 1302 copper contract was still around RMB 200/mt. Cargo-holders moved goods stably, but transactions for high-quality copper were a little better. Downstream producers generally opted to stay out of markets, while a falling number of speculators chose to enter markets, resulting in muted market activity. In the afternoon, with SHFE copper prices extending fluctuating range, both copper discounts and traded prices remained basically flat with morning levels, but market activity became more lackluster.