METALS-London metals rise as virus outbreak causes supply shortage worries

(Updates prices) By Mai Nguyen Feb 10 (Reuters) – London base metals advanced on Monday on fears of a supply shortage in China, a major producer of base metals, where a coronavirus outbreak has killed over 900 people and threatened to disrupt the global supply chain. Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange (LME) rose 0.6% to $5,693.50 a tonne by 0725 GMT, nickel jumped 1.8% to $12,995 a tonne, zinc rose 1.1% to $2,167.50 a tonne, tin advanced 2% to $16,500 a tonne, while lead edged down 0.1% to $1,815 a tonne. China’s nonferrous metal output will fall at least 10% year-on-year in February, as the country battles the virus outbreak but operations are expected to normalise after the second quarter, the country’s metal association said. “Before the price consolidation, the main concern was demand destruction due to China’s economic slowdown and lockdown, but as the situation develops, it seems that supply is also disrupted,” said analyst Helen Lau of Argonaut Securities. “Prices might weaken going forward but not too much,” Lau said. FUNDAMENTALS * DEATH TOLL: The new coronavirus has killed 908 people and infected 40,171 people in China. * CHILE COPPER: Chile state miner Codelco and BHP’s sprawling Escondida mine saw copper output rise in December 2019, Chilean state copper agency Cochilco said. * MANTOVERDE: Japan’s Mitsubishi Materials Corp has bought a 30% stake in Mantoverde copper mine and an associated copper project from Mantos Copper for $236 million to secure more concentrates for its smelters. * NORSK HYDRO: Aluminium producer Norsk Hydro reported a lower-than-expected fourth-quarter profit, sapped by dwindling demand and falling metal prices. * CHINA: China’s factory-gate prices snapped six months of year-on-year declines in January, although prolonged business closures from the outbreak mean positive momentum is unlikely to persist. * TIN: Indonesia’s state miner PT Timah plans to increase its 2020 refined tin output by 5% annually, a senior official said. * SHANGHAI PRICES: The most-traded copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange eased 0.7% to 45,410 yuan ($6,504.99) a tonne, nickel fell 0.6% to 104,450 yuan a tonne and lead declined 0.7% to 14,010 yuan a tonne. * For the top stories in metals and other news, click or PRICES Three month LME copper Most active ShFE copper Three month LME aluminium Most active ShFE aluminium Three month LME zinc Most active ShFE zinc Three month LME lead Most active ShFE lead Three month LME nickel Most active ShFE nickel Three month LME tin Most active ShFE tin ARBS ($1 = 6.9808 Chinese yuan renminbi) (Reporting by Mai Nguyen; Editing by Amy Caren Daniel)

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