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METALS-Shanghai copper prices fall sharply, track losses in London

BEIJING, Dec 6 (Reuters) - Shanghai copper fell more than 3 percent in early trade on Wednesday, tracking London prices which the session before saw their biggest drop since July, 2015.

FUNDAMENTALS

* SHFE COPPER: The most-traded Shanghai Futures Exchange copper contract was down 3.2 percent at 51,350 yuan ($7,758.44) a tonne at 0158 GMT, on course for its biggest one-day fall since November, 2016.

* LME COPPER: Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange was trading up 0.2 percent at $6,566 a tonne, having plummeted 4.2 percent on Tuesday as inventories rose and the dollar firmed.

* NICKEL: Shanghai nickel was down 4 percent, tracking a 4.6-percent fall on the LME in the previous session to the metal's lowest level in nearly two months.

* OTHER METALS: ShFE zinc slipped 2.2 percent, aluminum was down 1.5 percent and lead lost 1.8 percent amid a broad plunge in base metals.

METALS NEWS

* COPPER: Indonesia said on Tuesday it planned to acquire Rio Tinto's, stake in the Grasberg copper mine operated by Freeport-McMoRan Inc, potentially solving a drawn-out problem for all three parties.

* BATTERIES: Glencore has increased production of metals used to make electric car batteries faster than its major mining rivals, according to an industry-wide analysis.

* VIETNAM: The U.S. Commerce Department on Tuesday slapped steep import duties on steel products from Vietnam that originated from Chinese-made steel. For the top stories in metals and other news, click or

MARKETS NEWS

* Asian stocks slipped on Wednesday, pressured by losses on Wall Street as the technology sector stuttered yet again after a brief rebound, while the dollar sagged on lower long-term U.S. yields.

DATA AHEAD (GMT)

0700 Germany Industrial orders Oct 1315 U.S. ADP national employment

PRICES

BASE METALS PRICES 0158 GMT Three month LME copper 6556 Most active ShFE copper 51350 Three month LME aluminum 2053 Most active ShFE aluminum 14360 Three month LME zinc 3096.5 Most active ShFE zinc 24750 Three month LME lead 2480 Most active ShFE lead 18625 Three month LME nickel 10860 Most active ShFE nickel 87980 Three month LME tin 19410 Most active ShFE tin 139920

BASE METALS ARBITRAGE

LME/SHFE COPPER LMESHFCUc3 693.92 LME/SHFE ALUMINIUM LMESHFALc3 -1333.89 LME/SHFE ZINC LMESHFZNc3 337.46 LME/SHFE LEAD LMESHFPBc3 -1178.49 LME/SHFE NICKEL LMESHFNIc3 2754.6

($1 = 6.6186 Chinese yuan renminbi)

(Reporting by Tom Daly; Editing by Joseph Radford)