SHANGHAI, Feb. 6 (SMM) – LME nickel prices opened at USD 18,617/mt and closed at USD 18,743/mt overnight, up USD 93/mt from a day earlier, with the highest price at USD 18,750/mt and the lowest price at USD 18,475/mt. Daily trading volumes were 3,316 lots, down 53 lots. Positions were 114,466 lots, down 653 lots from a day earlier. LME nickel inventories were 150,834 mt, falling 72 mt from a day earlier.
The Asian stock markets fell across the board Tuesday, weighing down base metals. LME nickel prices thus started at USD 18,617/mt and fell to USD 18,475/mt. Although the Shanghai Composite Index regained earlier losses, LME nickel remained weak. During the European trading hours, economic data turned out mixed, but the rising equities in Europe and remark of President Obama drove LME nickel prices to rise and finally close at higher.
The US President Obama appealed the Congress to adopt any measure to put off the automatic spending cuts on March 1. In Europe, the eurozone service PMI and final reading of comprehensive PMI, as well as service PMI for Germany and the UK all exceeded previous figures and forecasts in January. Of them, the eurozone comprehensive PMI increased to a 10-month high of 48.6, signifying an economic recovery in the eurozone. The Euro rose 0.51% against the dollar.
Chief of Japan’s central bank Masaaki Shirakawa submitted resignation on January 5, strengthening market expectations for more easing policies.
In domestic markets, the People’s Bank of China conducted RMB 450 billion of 14-day reverse repos on Tuesday with the rate unchanged at 3.45%, providing liquidity for the Chinese New Year. Besides, new lending issued by the four largest banks should be RMB 370 billion in January.
LME nickel prices are expected to remain high, and spot nickel prices in China are expected at RMB 129,500-131,500/mt on January 6.