SHANGHAI, Mar. 21 (SMM) – The US dollar index crept higher as the US Federal Reserve’s policy decision continued to dampen market sentiment. This caused LME aluminum to move lower after opening at USD 1,736/mt on Friday. The light metal climbed to USD 1,721/mt on better-than-expected Philadelphia Fed’s manufacturing index in March, but then fell back to end down USD 22.3/mt or 1.28% at USD 1,714/mt. Trading volumes dropped 4,825 lots to 15,604 lots, while positions added 14,405 lots to 790,055 lots.
SHFE 1406 aluminum contract nudged up to RMB 12,855/mt after opening at RMB 12,750/mt on Thursday evening, but then pared gains to close at RMB 12,800/mt. Trading volumes totaled 14,962 lots, and positions increased 1,738 lots to 119,244 lots.
Concerns over credit crunch and economic slowdown in China will weigh the most active SHFE aluminum contract down to RMB 12,730-12,830/mt on Friday. In China’s physical market, demand should pick up somewhat ahead of the weekend, with prices expected at a discount of RMB 230-270/mt over SHFE 1404 aluminum contract prices.