METALS-London copper rises to one-week high on China optimism
* LME copper reopens after Christmas; hits one-week high
* China industrial profit jumps 22.8 in Nov
* Coming up: U.S. new home sales, Nov; 1500 GMT
SINGAPORE, Dec 27 (Reuters) - London copper rose to a one-week high on Thursday as the market reopened after the Christmas break, with Shanghai copper extending gains on data showing strong corporate profits in the world's top copper consumer China. Profits earned by China's industrial companies jumped 22.8 percent in November from a year earlier, accelerating from October's 20.5 percent, data from Beijing showed.
"People are hopeful that China's economy will recover next year," said Zhang Ao, an analyst at Minmetals Futures, adding that the climb in China's stock market also helped lift the mood in base metals. The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index rose to its highest in nearly six months. Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange gained 1.7 percent to $7,932 a tonne by 0157 GMT. It rose as high as $7,945.25 earlier, the highest since Dec. 19. The most-traded April copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange rose 0.7 percent to 57,550 yuan ($9,200) a tonne. Some cautioned that the thin holiday trade exaggerated the price movement, while the physical market remained sluggish. "Trading volume in the physical market is quite slow as traders are tight on cash near the year end," said a Shanghai-based trader. "I don't see any significant change on the macroeconomic environment or policy." The U.S. budget talks return to the centre stage as investors watch if the White House and Republicans can reach a deal to avert massive tax hikes and spending cuts as the deadline is only a few days away. A failure to reach an agreement would risk tipping the U.S. economy back into recession. In industry news, workers at the world's biggest copper mine, Chile's Escondida, have rejected an early pay offer made Wednesday.
Base metals prices at 0157 GMT
Metal Last Change Pct Move YTD pct chg LME Cu 7932.00 131.00 +1.68 4.37 SHFE CU FUT APR3 57550 390 +0.68 3.96 HG COPPER MAR3 360.55 0.80 +0.22 4.93 LME Alum 2095.00 4.00 +0.19 3.71 SHFE AL FUT MAR3 15350 50 +0.33 -3.12 LME Zinc 2093.00 3.00 +0.14 13.44 SHFE ZN FUT MAR3 15565 75 +0.48 5.20 LME Nickel 17436.00 361.00 +2.11 -6.81 LME Lead 2321.00 2.50 +0.11 14.05 SHFE PB FUT 15270.00 40.00 +0.26 -0.10 LME Tin 23294.00 94.00 +0.41 21.32 LME/Shanghai arb^ 402
Shanghai and COMEX contracts show most active months ($1 = 6.2353 Chinese yuan)
(Editing by Michael Urquhart)