SHANGHAI, Mar. 14 (SMM) – LME zinc prices opened at USD 2,004.5/mt overnight. During Asian trading hours, LME zinc prices leveled out and touched USD 2,008.8/mt. but as value-added at China's scale-efficient industries, fixed assets investments and sales data fell short of market expectations, market concerns over China's demand grew. When combined with deteriorating Ukraine crisis, base metals prices continued to fall during European and US trading hours. LME zinc prices fell with LME copper prices, dipping below USD 2,000/mt, dropping to a new low of USD 1,979.8/mt, and closing at USD 1,986.8/mt, down USD 14.3/mt or 0.71%. Trading volumes decreased by 6,167 lots to 11,149 lots, and total positions decreased by 1,471 lots to 314,764 lots. LME zinc inventories fell by 3,450 mt to 796,700 mt.
SHFE 1405 zinc contract prices opened low at RMB 14,750/mt on Thursday evening, then fluctuated weakly due to weakening LME zinc prices, and finally closing at RMB 14,790/mt, down RMB 50/mt or 0.34%. Trading volumes decreased by 8,972 lots to 13,876 lots, and total positions decreased by 374 lots to 90,464 lots.
China's sluggish economic data deepened market concerns over China's demand, weighing down base metals. Market risk appetite is weak due to worsening Ukraine crisis. LME zinc prices are expected to move between USD 1,960-2,000/mt, and SHFE 1405 zinc contract prices will hover between RMB 14,720-14,820/mt, with spot discounts of RMB 90-120/mt against SHFE 1405 zinc contract prices.