SHANGHAI, Feb. 6 (SMM) – The macro news front remained relatively quiet Tuesday. Japan's central bank governor Masaaki Shirakawa said the will resign on March 19, before his term expires, which heightened market expectations over the country's implementation of further easing measures. The euro zone announced mixed economic data, with German, Spanish, and European PMI data all coming in favorable. The euro zone's retail sales figure and the PMI index out of both Italy and France were softer than anticipated. Nevertheless, the euro still rallied and lifted the financial market. The US reported that home prices rose 0.4% in December, while the ISM services index slipped to 55.2% in January. Meanwhile, Obama said he will urge the Congress to postpone automatic spending cut, and the CBO predicted that the federal government's budget deficit will drop below USD 1 trillion this year. In this context, US equity markets pared some of losses Tuesday following considerable declines a day ago. LME copper thus stayed within its previous trading range, but the high-end price rose significantly. With a high at USD 8,311/mt, LME copper prices finally closed flat at USD 8,288/mt. In other news, London copper discount quotes widened to USD 39/mt the same day as LME copper stocks increased appreciably.
With market sentiment improving, LME copper prices will fluctuate at highs between USD 8,260-8,330/mt during Wednesday's Asian trading session. SHFE copper prices will probably march slightly higher after opening flat and may test the RMB 60,000/mt point. SHFE 1305 copper contract will hover in a range of RMB 59,700-60,200/mt. Shanghai spot copper discounts are estimated between RMB 200-300/mt versus SHFE current-month copper contract.