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METALS-London copper touches highest since April as dollar falls

MELBOURNE, June 29 (Reuters) - London copper punched through a key technical level on Thursday as a weaker dollar and falling supply helped prices hit their highest in almost three months.

FUNDAMENTALS

* London Metal Exchange copper had climbed 0.7 percent to $5,924.50 a tonne by 0234 GMT. Prices earlier marked their strongest since April 5 at $5,933.50 a tonne.

* Prices have broken through the 200-day moving average on their weekly chart, a key buy signal for chart following funds, for the first time since February. The last time copper prices traded and held above this level was prior to March 2013.

* LME copper stockpiles have fallen by 1,875 tonnes, to just under 250,000 tonnes, the smallest since early March and down by nearly 100,000 tonnes since early May.

* Shanghai Futures Exchange copper rallied 1.2 percent to 47,350 yuan ($6,982.33) a tonne. Prices broke back above the 100-day moving average for the first time since March.

* LME lead was also approaching three-month highs as mine supply shrinks and China imports more metal.

* Global debt levels have climbed $500 billion in the past year to a record $217 trillion, a new study shows, just as major central banks prepare to end years of super-cheap credit policies.

* Mining companies operating in Chile are examining restarting projects that were put on hold in recent years due to a copper price slump, the mining minister and industry executives said, though final investment decisions will wait until political uncertainty lifts after the November presidential elections.

* Contracts to buy previously owned U.S. homes unexpectedly fell in May, the third straight monthly decline, as a lack of homes for sale on the market crimped supply.

* For the top stories in metals and other news, click or

MARKETS NEWS

* The U.S. dollar index slid after Bank of England Governor Mark Carney said a debate on the need to raise interest rates is due "in the coming months," adding to a hawkish tone out of the European Central Bank on Tuesday.

DATA AHEAD (GMT) 0600 Germany GfK consumer sentiment Jul 0900 Euro zone Business climate Jun 0900 Euro zone Consumer confidence final Jun 1200 Germany Consumer prices Jun 1230 U.S. GDP final Q1 1230 U.S. Weekly jobless claims

BASE METALS PRICES 0248 GMT Three month LME copper 5913 Most active ShFE copper 47280 Three month LME aluminium 1898.5 Most active ShFE aluminium 13970 Three month LME zinc 2743.5 Most active ShFE zinc 22620 Three month LME lead 2297 Most active ShFE lead 17720 Three month LME nickel 9275 Most active ShFE nickel 76260 Three month LME tin 19450 Most active ShFE tin 144760

BASE METALS ARBITRAGE

LME/SHFE COPPER LMESHFCUc3 507.94 LME/SHFE ALUMINIUM LMESHFALc3 -1007.0

9

LME/SHFE ZINC LMESHFZNc3 421.33 LME/SHFE LEAD LMESHFPBc3 -1206.0

9

LME/SHFE NICKEL LMESHFNIc3 1979.65

($1 = 6.7814 Chinese yuan renminbi)

(Reporting by Melanie Burton; Editing by Joseph Radford)