LONDON, April 7 (Reuters) - Copper fell from a two-week high
on Wednesday on worries over demand as inventories continued to
increase and premiums for the red metal into top consumer China
Benchmark copper on the London Metal Exchange (LME)
shed 1.3% to $8,933 a tonne by 1650 GMT. The metal touched its
highest level since March 23 at $9,104 in the previous session.
Copper inventories in LME-registered warehouses have since
surged to 150,325 tonnes compared with 74,200 tonnes at the end
of February. <MCUSTX-TOTAL>
Stocks have also climbed elsewhere. <CU-STX-SGH>
"Stocks have almost doubled since the lows in February.
That's not a good sign in supporting the narrative around any
immediate deficit," said ING analyst Wenyu Yao.
Marex Spectron's Alastair Munro said there had "been likely
producer sell interest," where metal producers take advantage of
spikes in prices to hedge, selling their output in advance.
Meanwhile, the Yangshan copper premium <SMM-CUYP-CN> is at
its lowest since November at $54 a tonne, pointing to weakening
demand for imports into China. The premium reflects the amount
buyers are willing to pay on top of LME copper price for
But analysts said demand should be seasonally stronger in
the second quarter.
SPREADS: The LME cash copper contract commands a $3.50 a
tonne premium over the three-month contract compared with a high
of $62.30 in February, when stocks were low. <MCU0-3>
POSITIONING: Investor interest in copper has waned, with the
net long position in LME copper down to 22% of open interest
from 62% at the end of February, broker Marex Spectron said.
CONCENTRATES: Chilean miner Antofagasta sold 10,000
tonnes of copper concentrate for June shipment at treatment and
refining charges of about $10 a tonne and 1 cent a pound, three
sources with knowledge of the deal said.
ZINC TREATMENT: Teck Resources and its smelter
customers Glencore and Korea Zinc nearly
halved treatment and refining charges (TC/RCs) in a deal for
2021 to $159 per tonne due to tight mine supply, Fastmarkets
OTHER PRICES: Aluminium fell 0.4% to $2,258 tonne,
zinc was steady at $2,826, lead rose 0.6% to
$1,979.50, tin was up 0.3% at $25,750 while nickel
edged down 0.7% to $16,625.
(Reporting by Zandi Shabalala in London
Additional Reporting by Mai Nguyen
Editing by David Evans and Matthew Lewis)