SHANGHAI, Jan. 18 (SMM) – LME zinc prices overnight opened at USD 1,986/mt, and dipped to USD 1,972.8/mt in the morning trading. In the afternoon, LME zinc prices edged up and rallied to the 60-day moving average. US housing starts in December jumped 12.1% to 954,000 units, and monthly average housing starts in 2012 were 780,000 units, much higher than the 608,000 units in 2011. Besides, the number of first-time jobless claims last week decreased by 37,000 to 335,000, the lowest since January 2008. In this context, LME zinc prices soared above the 5-day moving average, and touched USD 2,014/mt, and finally closed at USD 2,011/mt, up USD 24/mt or 1.2%. LME zinc inventories fell by 2,575 mt to 1,224,200 mt.
LME zinc prices should fluctuated between USD 2,000-2,030/mt today, and SHFE three-month zinc contract prices should slip to RMB 15,300-15,450/mt, with spot discounts RMB 270-320/mt.