METALS-Copper falls on strong dollar, growth worries
* Euro near 5-week low vs dollar
* Shanghai copper stocks fall to 9-month low Coming next: U.S. job data; 1230 GMT
LONDON, July 5 (Reuters) - Copper fell for the second day running on Friday under pressure from a stronger dollar and on worries over economic growth prospects in top metals consumer China and in Europe. Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange (LME) fell 1.8 percent to $6,827.50 a tonne by 1005 GMT. The euro dipped towards a five-week trough against the dollar on Friday, hit by a European Central Bank (ECB) pledge on Thursday to keep interest rates low. A stronger dollar makes dollar-priced metals more costly for non-U.S. buyers. "The weakness today is mostly a combination of negative economic sentiment, stronger dollar and continuing outflows of investors from the commodity space," Commerzbank metals analyst Eugen Weinberg said. "(ECB president) Mario Draghi's press conference yesterday showed that the prospects for growth in Europe are still very slim and we see continued negative tone in the news from China where the government seems to be well oriented to a slowdown." Draghi said on Thursday that growth risks for Europe were on the downside and a slew of weak economic data from China is also weighing on sentiment. Adding to a bearish undertone for metals, data showed investors were net sellers of commodity exchange-traded products (ETPs) in June after the U.S. Federal Reserve signalled it would wind down its economic stimulus programme. Investors are eyeing U.S. non-farm payrolls, due later in the session, for clues on the state of the economy.
BETTER FUNDAMENTALS Fundamentals for the physical copper market are not as gloomy as financial markets might suggest, analysts said. Copper prices have rebounded by 4 percent from late June's three-year lows, also helped by near-term supply tightness to China. "Under the surface the market seems to be in a better shape," Weinberg said. "Bonded warehouses (used to store metals before tax is paid) stocks are not too high, underlying demand seems to be robust still in China so I wouldn't be concerned about the fundamentals side in China. I would be more worried about sentiment and the financial markets implication for copper." China's copper importers are being forced by bottlenecks at London Metal Exchange's warehousing system to queue for deliveries of metal they have already bought, resulting in spot copper import premiums rising by a third since mid-June. Premiums for copper held in China's warehouses hit a peak of $210 a week ago before easing to about $185 this week, according to price provider SMM.
Copper cancelled warrants , or material earmarked for delivery, account for about 55 percent of the LME stocks and copper inventories in warehouses monitored by the Shanghai Futures Exchange fell 5.2 percent from last Friday to their lowest levels since October. Both these elements suggest improving demand for the metal.
Metal Prices at 1010 GMT Comex copper in cents/lb, LME prices in $/T and SHFE prices in yuan/T
Metal Last Change Pct Move End 2012 Ytd Pct
COMEX Cu 3.10 -0.07 -2.35 365.25 -99.15 LME Alum 1791.75 -20.25 -1.12 2073.00 -13.57 LME Cu 6830.25 -119.75 -1.72 7931.00 -13.88 LME Lead 2040.25 -33.75 -1.63 2330.00 -12.44 LME Nickel 13622.00 -203.00 -1.47 17060.00 -20.15 LME Tin 19650.00 -350.00 -1.75 23400.00 -16.03 LME Zinc 1841.25 -19.75 -1.06 2080.00 -11.48 SHFE Alu 14310.00 -25.00 -0.17 15435.00 -7.29 SHFE Cu* 49620.00 -820.00 -1.63 57690.00 -13.99 SHFE Zin 14470.00 -65.00 -0.45 15625.00 -7.39 ** Benchmark month for COMEX copper * 3rd contract month for SHFE AL, CU and ZN
SHFE ZN began trading on 26/3/07