SHANGHAI, Apr. 20 (SMM) – Copper and crude oil prices tracked plunging gold prices down.
SHFE copper for August delivery ended Thursday down by its daily limit at RMB 50,530/mt. Spot copper in Shanghai was quoted at a discount of RMB 0-200/mt and premium of RMB 0-20/mt over SHFE 1305 copper contract. Traded prices for standard-quality copper were between RMB 50,630-50,680/mt, and RMB 50,580-50,850/mt for high-quality copper, an astounding decrease of RMB 2,560/mt from the previous day, with the average traded prices tumbling to the lowest since June 2010 at RMB 50,740/mt. Some middlemen went bargain hunting in the morning, while downstream producers refused to enter the market.
SHFE 1306 aluminum contract closed down 0.48% at RMB 14,545/mt on Thursday. Spot aluminum was traded at RMB 14,370-14,400/mt in Shanghai, a discount of RMB 70-100/mt over SHFE 1305 aluminum contract. Low-iron aluminum was traded around RMB 14,550/mt. Most traders were eager to sell at discounts of RMB 100/mt. Downstream producers purchased to need, and middlemen became less interested in low-priced goods, leaving mainstream traded prices at RMB 14,400/mt. Traders in south China held offers at RMB 14,540/mt, more resilient than in east China. Downstream purchases were stable, while middlemen were active in bargain hunting, leaving trading brisk. Both sides were cautious about future prices, though.
The most active SHFE lead contract finished at RMB 13,755/mt on April 18, down as much as 2.69%. Spot lead prices averaged RMB 13,850/mt, the lowest since June 2010. Chihong Zn & Ge was quoted at RMB 13,570/mt, a premium of RMB 50/mt over SHFE 1305 lead contract. Quotations for Shuikoushan and Yubei were between RMB 13,530-13,540/mt, RMB 30/mt higher than SHFE 1305 lead contract. Downstream producers were reluctant to purchase despite low prices for fear of further declines.
The most active SHFE zinc contract shed 2.16% to close at RMB 14,290/mt on Thursday. #0 zinc was traded at RMB 14,100-14,200/mt, flat with or RMB 20/mt higher than SHFE 1307 zinc contract. Trading volumes of #1 zinc were sparse due to supply shortfall. Traders were in a hurry to sell against narrowing spot discounts. A small number of downstream producers stepped up purchases, but most were cautious.